By Alexey Sukachev
DIVS,Ekaterinburg - Dmitry Mikhaylenko's stagnating career took another major hit, and once again in front of his supporters in Ekaterinburg, Russia, as he was dealt his third decision loss in his last four fights - this time by almost unknown prospect Islam Dumanov on a split over ten.
Mikhaylenko was by far more experienced of the two. He was presumably tougher, more skillful and a bigger puncher. He was arguably a pre-fight favorite and an expected victor. He had been a star of the fight. Except that he wasn't. Dumanov was.
Originally from the Republic of Kabardino-Balkaria but now representing Moscow, Dumanov, did what was expected of him - he moved out of Mikhaylenko's fire range with some lateral footwork. Mikhaylenko landed some big shots in the first but in the second Dumanov's moves became trickier, his presence more elusive. Mikhaylenko, 31, tried to get inside bout found rare success, his punches mostly missing. Dumanov wasn't a clear hitter as well but at least he landed them to the gloves and to the hands of his counterpart.
As rounds went by Dumanov's visible success became more evident, as Mikhaylenko attempts got more fruitless. However, when he did land punches, Dumanov clearly felt them. And they hurt him. But those successful outbursts were rare on The Mechanic's behalf.
At the end, two judges awarded the fight to Dumanov: 97-93 and 96-94. The third one gave it 97-93 - to the locally based fighter. Dumanov improves to 8-1, 4 KOs, while Mikhaylenko, once the WBC Silver champion, drops down to 22-3, 10 KOs.
The loss means more to Mikhaylenko's career. He experienced his best moments between 2014 and early 2016 when he fought and beat the likes of Sechew Powell, Ronald Cruz, Johan Perez and Karim Mayfield - all those wins being scored in the States and in Canada, where he is undefeated (5-0, 3 KOs). His troubles began with a loss to Charles Manyuchi in his homeland defense in May 2016. He came back with a stoppage win over renowned veteran gatekeeper Breidis Prescott, also in 2016, but then suffered a loss to Manyuchi's conqueror Qudratillo Abduqaxorov in July 2017. He should now reconsider his career, maybe making some tough decisions in process.
2017 debutant Zaur Abdullaev (8-0, 6 KOs) opened his second year as a pro with a quality win over experienced Filipino Ardie Boyose (18-2-2, 14 KOs). Abdullaev dropped his opponent twice en route to a dominant seventh-round TKO victory.
The vacant WBO Youth lightweight title was at stake in a bout between the 22-year old native of the Cebu Island, who debuted in paid ranks back in 2011, and his 23-year old Russian counterpart. Abdullaev was one, who was pressing the action against mostly defensive Boyose. Still the Filipino was as dangerous as they go, waiting for an opportunity to land a powerful left hook in return. It has never come though.
Abdullaev's primary key to a coming victory was his skill of bodysnatching. It came in variety of certain shots, including left hooks to the liver section, right hooks to the spleen and jabs to Boyose's mid-section. That did what they had been supposed to do. The Filipino slowed down, dropped his guard a bit and became stationary. It's where hooks left uppercuts came in during the seventh round. Their effect was immediate as Boyose was firstly dropped down and then decked again by the very same punch - this time for the count.
Fighting back into the fight game after five years off the ring, the latest Deontay Wilder-conqueror Evgeny Romanov, who knocked out reigning WBC heavyweight champion back in 2008, improved his record to 8-0, 5 KOs by stopping Ukrainian import German Skobenko (4-1-2, 1 KO) at 0:48 of the seventh round.
Skill was the difference in a collision between two fighters of seemingly different weight classes, Romanov being somewhat 45 pounds lighter thank Skobenko. Romanov's class and his skills allowed him to tag Skobenko cleaner and with a greater effect than the opposite way. Skobenko started to fade at about a mid-point, lost his focus and started to get hit at will midst into the sixth. He survived it but then turned his back on Romanov, forcing a referee to call it quits at the start of the seventh.
Kurgan-born Surgat-raised Russian Vladislav Krasnoshein (3-0-1, 2 KOs) forced Belarussian trialhorse Ilya Reutskiy (9-17-1, 5 KOs) to suffer his tenth consecutive loss, when he stopped him after a knockdown at 2:02 of the fifth round. Krasnoshein was considerably better than his more experienced foe, hurting his opponent several times. Reutskiy was a bit dirty, a bit abusive but far less skilled than the Russian, which led to his loss.
Kazakh lightweight Stanislav Kalitskiy (4-0, 3 KOs) was humbled but not completely by experienced veteran gatekeeper Denis Lashin (7-6-1, 2 KOs). Kalitskiy started explosively, landing a number of crisp blows in a couple of opening rounds, but Lashin has gradually worked his way into the fight by landing hard left counters. The ending rounds were fought on even terms but it was Kalitskiy - going the distance for the first time - who earned a unanimous decision over six rounds. BoxingScene had it 57-57 - a draw.