By Alexey Sukachev
In the WBA realm of various trinkets and multiple champions under the same sanctioning body, another obscure “world” champion will be crowned in a week and a half in its Ukrainian citadel. Union Boxing Promotions stages another of its events on November 10 at “Druzhba” palace of sports in Donetsk, and it will feature the WBA interim super middleweight championship between two local teammates: Stas Kashtanov and Server Emurlayev.
WBA #2 boxer-puncher Kashtanov, 28, is a physically imposing (6’1’’) boxer-puncher with solid chin and solid skills. He had fought nobody of not in his first 28 fights but was elevated to the challenger’s status and fought former WBO champion Karoly Balzsay a year ago, also in Donetsk, for the WBA belt. In a close fight, which could have gone either way, judges produces a big upset for a local hero and scored it for the Hungarian on a split nod. Kashtanov (29-1, 16 KOs) came back in April to stop Uruguayan Jorge Daniel Olvera within seven rounds.
WBA #4 Server Emurlayev (22-0, 8 KOs), 26, presents a new wave of UBP prospects. He debuted as a pro in 2007 and slowly rose into local fame. He was also the EBA super middleweight champion, the title he had defended twice, before the EBA had been expelled from the WBA. Emurlayev is a good body puncher and a boxer with versatile skills but he lacks a one-punch power, although his can deliver a prolonged and painful drubbing to his victims. The latter group, however, includes only journeymen (at best) at the present time.
There’s only one internationally recognized WBA champion in this weight class, and that is Andre Ward, who also holds the WBC belt. He is in the “duper champion”, and that’s why the so-called “regular” title got vacated. It will be contested on Dec. 8 in Copenhagen by Danish star Mikkel Kessler (who has already been defeated by Ward) and previous WBA interim champion Brian Magee, a veteran Brit. The fight between Kashtanov and Emurlayev, which will be the second of all-Ukrainian WBA showdowns (following Nuzhnenko – Senchenko welterweight bout in 2009), has been confirmed by the UBP press officers: “It’s a done deal. We are going on with this fight”, said Natalya Ryabchenko to this reporter.
In a co-feature, WBA #6 cruiserweight Iago Kiladze (19-0, 13 KOs), 25 years of age, faces his toughest opponent yet in the Pole Grzegorz Soszynski (21-1-1, 10 KOs), 30, in the fourth defense of his WBA I/C title. Kiladze, a Georgian import, is a busy boxer-puncher. He lacks some needed maturity but he will get it, and once he has it, he will be quite a dangerous fighter to stand against. Soszynski is no world-beater but he has experience, and his only loss came against world-ranked fighter Dawid Kostecki.
The rest of the card is filled with various prospects. Ukrainian light middleweight champion Artem Karpets (16-0, 6 KOs) will look to extend his winning streak against dangerous Latvian upset artist Senjons Moroseks (17-20-1, 7 KOs), who has kayo wins over 11-1 Disarjot Gaxhi and 31-1 Luciano Abis in his past. Flyweight Olexander Gryschuk (10-0, 4 KOs) and super bantamweight Olexander Yegorov (10-0-1, 6 KOs) will test their skills against tough veterans. Gryschuk battles Moldavian journeyman Ghennadiy Delisandru (18-15-1, 6 KOs), while Yegorov takes on former fringe contender Yuri Voronin (27-15-2, 18 KOs), who has lost his last six – mainly in the United Kingdom. Flyweight Artem Dalakian (5-0, 3 KOs) will also participate.