By Jake Donovan
Later this evening at Derwent Entertainment Center in Hobart, Tasmania, middleweight titlist Daniel Geale (26-1, 15KO) makes the second defense of his belt as he faces Osumanu Adama (20-2, 15KO).
Featherweight titlist Billy Dib made his second successful defense in the evening’s co-feature, scoring a seventh round stoppage of fringe contender Eduardo Escobedo.
Dib came out intent on scoring a knockout, but struggled early on to fight within the rules. The Aussie featherweight mauled Escobedo all night, working well at times but also flirting with disaster. A warning was issued in the opening round for low blows, but Dib continued onward with an assortment of fouls though while controlling the action.
Justice was finally served in the third, when Dib was docked a point for holding and hitting. The deduction was doubly damaging as it was also the first round of the fight won by Escobedo, thus bringing an even keel on the scorecards through three rounds.
To his credit, Dib adjusted to the ruling and sought to take his attack upstairs. The defending titlist took over the fight, but had a hard time landing clean as Escobedo went into a defensive shell, looking more to avoid the incoming than to actually make a fight of it.
The tactic only made it easier for Dib to pile up rounds, as well as adjust and find a way to win and try his hardest to look good doing so in the process. Escobedo had no clue – and seemingly no desire – to swing momentum back in his favor.
Such was reflected in his body language following the end of the sixth round, when the Mexican chose to remain on his stool rather than come out for the start of the seventh.
Dib advances to 34-1 (21KO) in extending his unbeaten streak to 14 straight since suffering his lone career loss to Steven Luevano more than three years ago.
Escobedo’s four-year, 11-fight win streak is snapped as he heads home to Mexico with a record of 32-4 (23KO).
Former heavyweight title challenger Kali Maheen moves one step closer to retirement after suffering a sixth round knockout at the hands of Travis Walker. The fight was toe-to-toe action for as long as it lasted, but the 41-year old Meehan (38-5, 31KO) eventually gave in as Walker (39-7-1, 31KO) unloaded in the sixth to prompt the stoppage.
In the opening televised opener, Alex Ahtong pulled off a mild surprise with a six-round unanimous decision over homegrown Steven Maxwell. No scores were announced for their six-round welterweight bout, but Ahtong (8-13-1, 5KO) was the aggressor throughout the contest as Maxwell (11-6, 6KO) was simply outworked in what was a terrific war.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter at twitter.com/JakeNDaBox or submit questions/comments to JakeNDaBox@gmail.com