By Alexey Sukachev
Casino de Monte Carlo Salle Medecin, Monte Carlo, Monaco - Displaying the highest standards of professionalism and fairness, judge Pawel Kardynyi of Poland became the decisive factor of his countryman Mateusz Masternak's... second career loss. Kardynyi scored Masternak's fight against France-based Congolese Youri Kayembre Kalenga (20-1, 13 KOs) 115-113 - for the latter, supporting the 116-112 score of Raul Caiz Sr., and thus overwriting the tally of Juan Manuel Garcia Reyes: 115-113 - for Masternak (32-2, 23 KOs), who has suffered his second defeat in his last four fights.
WBA #6 and WBO #14 Masternak, 27, signed with the Sauerland Event in 2012 and hasn't looked anywhere near as good as he had been before since that. In this fight, Masternak, once one of the most promising European young cruiserweights, didn't impress as well. He chose to move backwards from the aggressive French slugger, who didn't wait for long to realize this chance. WBA #7 Kalenga immediately began to connect freely with his right hand. He took the first three rounds solely with this straight hand, which penetrated Masternak's defense well too often. The Pole was rocked a couple of times but Kalenga was unable to put him down.
Mateusz did better in the fourth, finding a room for his left jab. That was enough to create some problems for the Frenchman. Kalenga resolved them in the fifth but Masterbak started to get more and more successful with his counterpunches in the sixth and seventh, the latter being his best round. Kalenga got back to deal some more damage with his trademark right hands in the ninth. Both fighters did their best to overwhelm one each other in the championship rounds, and Kalenga looked (and was) more active and consistent of the two.
BoxingScene had it 116-112 - for Kalenga, who acquired a so-called WBA interim cruiserweight title in this fight, making a rocky road from an unknown prospect to a sensational kayo winner against fellow 20-0 undefeated (Yago Kiladze) to the loss to 11-18-3 fighter on points (Arturs Kulikauskis) to a win in a trinket fight - all within the year.
WBA and IBO strawweight champion Hekkie Budler of South Africa displayed his finesse and great physical shape in the eight-round destruction of experienced Thai challenger Pigmy Kokietgym (52-7-2, 22 KOs). Budler (26-1, 9 KOs), who stopped Kokietgym (also known as Muangchayfum) at 1:06 of the round, made the sixth defense of his IBO belt and the second defense of the WBA title he owns.
Budler, 26, nicknamed "Hexecutioner", was considerably better than his WBO #6 and IBF #8 challenger in almost every department from the opening bell. He was more aggressive. more versatile, faster and more consistent. Kokietgym tried to move forward but was soon forced to retreat under fire. However, Budler's aggression wasn't overwhelming as he chose to pick Kokietgym apart methodically rather than explosively.
The South African began to show more poise in round four and dropped the 32-year old former world title challenger (for the same title against his countryman Kwanthai Sithmorseng in 2010) with the right-left combination to the head at the end of it (ropes helped Kokietgym to retain the upright position). Budler also dominated rounds five and six, getting more and more explosive with each minute. He finally dropped Pigmy with a left hand to the liver with seconds remaining in round seven. The end came soon after the break after two more knockdowns from the defending champion in round eight.
MORE RESULTS TO COME............... Tags: Mateusz Masternak , Hekkie Budler