By Chris LaBate
At the American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida, Olympic gold medal winner Odlanier Solis (17-0 12KOs) picked up a ten round disqualification win over Ray Austin (28-5-4, 18KOs) in a WBC final heavyweight eliminator to earn an immediate shot at champion Vitali Klitschko in early 2011.
In the first, Austin was using his reach advantage to work the jab and set up right hands. Solis kept a high guard and used a jab to jump in with hard hooks. The second round had Solis being more active by jumping in with hooks and coming forward. Austin continued to work off the jab and started landing hard shots to Solis' soft body. The third saw Solis breaking down the distance and landing short hooks on the inside.
The fourth was very similar to the third, with Austin having a good rally of punches to the head and body in the end. In the fifth, Solis let his hands go and started to unload with punches on Austin. A hard hook sent AUstin crashing and he was very hurt when he got up. Solis didn't get crazy. He was patient and tried to set up the finishing shots. Austin stayed very defensive, held a lot and managed to survive the round. In the sixth, Austin stayed cautious and used a jab to keep Solis back.
Austin started with better punches in the seventh. He appeared to be fully recovered from the fifth and was landing good combinbations off the jab. Solis started pressing with hard punches in the eight. Austin offered very little in return. The ninth was more of the same, with Solis just pressing and landing punches as Austin continued to move back and used a soft jab that did nothing to keep Solis back. A lot of Solis' punches failed to land solid because he was jumping in without his feet being planted.
In the tenth, Austin started breaking down from the pressure. Solis was started to land some good punches that sent Austin flying into the ropes. Austin at one point was rocked and continued to hold for his life and refused to let go. The ref took away a point for excessive holding.
Then the fight had a very strange ending as the tenth round closed. Austin was hurt and once again held on to Solis, but this time against the ropes and nearly sent both of them flying over. The ref held on to them, along with others on the outside, to keep them from flying over. Even Solis' promoter Ahmet Oner jumped onto the ring apron to push them back in.
Mind you that all of this took place at the bell and once they were pulled in it was way after the bell had rung. Once they were pulled back in, Austin turned around and punched Solis in the face. The ref quickly issued a disqualification call and the fight was over.