By Alexey Sukachev
Looking his best and boxing his best WBC cruiserweight champion and TBRB #4 Grigory Drozd continued his Polish extermination tour and successfully retained his regalia for the first time with the ninth-round stoppage of late sub Lukasz Janik (28-3, 15 KOs).
WBC #19 Janik, 29, was no match for the 35-year old Russian from the very beginning. Drozd used one-two combos and mixed them with hard body blows. Janik, limited to clinching and holding, was first seriously hurt in the third, and after the fourth all three scorecards were 40-36 - for the champion.
Janik continued to receive punishment in the next rounds. In the seventh he was pushed to the canvas after another brutal combo, and referee Ian John-Lewis issued a count. Scores were 80-71 across the boards according to the WBC open scoring after the eighth.
The end came 50 seconds later, when Janik, wobbly after more taken punches, was saved on his feet by the referee.
Next for Drozd can be WBC mandatory Ilunga Makabu. Drozd is now 4-0, 3 KOs since signing with the WoB and 3-0, 2 KOs, against the Poles, including stoppage win over Mateusz Masternak and decision against Krzysztof Wlodarczyk.
MORE UNDERCARD RESULTS
World-rated cruiserweight and 2008 Beijing heavyweight gold medalist Rakhim Chakhkiev (23-1, 18 KOs) scored a sudden 8th round kayo against American contender Junior Anthony Wright (13-1-1, 11 KOs). A perfectly placed body shot put an end to a boring contest, allowing Chakhkiev to celebrate the win, the recent birth of his son and acquire a vacant IBO 200 lb. title.
The bout was very uneventful up until the knockout. Wright showed expert skills in spoiling and avoiding any exchanges, while top-ten rated and TBRB #7 Chakhkiev was inactive and only successful in rare and short spurts. The end came at 2:39 of the eighth when the proud Ingush connected with a picturesque left hook to the liver section to level the American for good.
WBC #2, WBA #6 and IBF #9 cruiserweight terror Dmitry Kudryashov continued his rapid rise with a stoppage win over WBO #4 Namibian Vikapita Meroro (28-5, 14 KOs), but it wasn't easy.
Kudryashov (18-0, 18 KOs) had problems dealing with a smaller and quicker opponent and tasted some leather before his power started to tell. It was in the fifth when Meroro went down on accumulation of punches. The end came in the next round after a pair of left hooks by the Hammer - to the head and to the body. Time of stoppage was 1:54 of the round.
When one of the two doesn't want to engage in close-quarter exchanges with a brawler, and another one doesn't have enough skills to force him to a fight gonna be a stinker. That was what happened in a buoy between Manuel Charr (28-3, 16 KOs) of Syria and Australian Alex Leapai (30-7-3, 24 KOs).
Both heavies fought in spurts but while almost all Charr's punches got through, Leapai was only lucky with right hands to the body. Charr was better in every round of this forgettable fight and rightfully got a unanimous decision: 100-99, 97-92, and 98-94. Boxingscene had it 97-93 - for Charr, who praised a fallen warrior in Denis Boytsov afterwards.
In a non-title eight-round light welterweight fight Russian Svetlana Kulakova (10-0-1, 1 KO) dominated German import Marie Riederer (15-3-1, 10 KOs).
Riederer was hurt numerous times but never went down. Scores were: 80-72, 80-72, and 80-73 - for Kulakova, whose WBA interim title wasn't at stake since she came overweight.
Light heavyweight prospect Dmitry Bivol (now 3-0, 3 KOs) continued to impress with the 4th round stoppage of well-traveled journeyman Joey Vegas (17-11-2, 10 KOs).
Vegas, imitating Floyd Mayweather with his shoulder-first guard, was in survival mode from opening bell. He has only lasted so long. In the third he was hurt and dropped twice by Bivol's power. The end came at 1:10 of the next stanza with a smashing left uppercut. Next for Bivol is his American debut.
In the opener, Chechen debutant Ramzan Baysarov (1-0) easily dominated no-hoper Andrey Polyakov (0-8) over four rounds of one-sided action with a unanimous decision. Polyakov was down with a body punch in the first.