Bakhodir Jalolov returned to the pro ranks with a bang.
The unbeaten heavyweight was brief and emphatic in his destruction of grossly overmatched Julio Cesar Calimeno. A straight left hand flattened Colombia’s (4-2, 4KOs), prompting an immediate stoppage just 0:46 into round one of their bout Saturday evening at Coca-Cola Arena in Dubai.
Jalolov originally turned pro in 2018, despite maintaining his amateur status which included his claiming the super heavyweight championship in the 2019 World Amateur Championships. Eight straight knockouts as a pro kept him sharp heading into the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics earlier this summer. Jalolov brought home a Gold medal for Uzbekistan, outpointing United States’ Richard Torrez Jr. whom he previously knocked out in the first round in the 2019 World Championship.
Saturday’s affair was intended as means for Jalolov to reacclimate to the pros, though he had the wrong opponent to give him any kind of work. Calimeno was coming off an eighth round stoppage loss just five weeks ago, though technically just outside of the mandatory suspension period in being cleared to fight.
It hardly mattered, as Calimeno’s lack of skill was evident from the opening bell. The Colombian native offered a high and wide defense, though Jalolov spent the very early portion measuring up his foe. The 27-year-oid southpaw saw the opening he wanted, a straight left hand to put Calimeno down and out in forcing the referee to wave off the contest without a count.
Jalolov improves to 9-0 (9KOs) with the win, his first since his Olympic Gold medal win. He has yet to be extended beyond the fourth round in his boxing lifetime.
Jalolov-Calimeno aired live on AXS TV in the United States, coming in supporting capacity to IBF flyweight titlist Sunny Edwards (16-0, 4KOs) in a mandatory defense versus Philippines' Jayson Mama (16-0, 9KOs).
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox