By Alexey Sukachev, photos by Lawrence Lustig
Monaco - In the co-feature, it wasn't easy but undefeated Germany-based Turk Agit Kabayel retained his European heavyweight title by scoring the biggest win of his young career - a majority decision over not-so-determined former world title challenger Dereck "Del Boy" Chisora over twelve rounds.
WBC #12, WBO #13 and IBF #14 Kabayel, though the bigger of the two, remained at a long range against usually aggressive Chisora. This time, however, Del Boy was slow and lethargic - specifically, in the first round. Kabayel did a better job with his jab and lateral movement.
Chisora, 33, did better in the second and in the third by landing some huge shots even though Kabayel took them fairly well. Kabayel replied with some solid leather in the fourth and in the fifth but the Brit was a notch batter in the mid-set.
Still power and intensity of Chisora wasn't enough to prevent Kabayel from moving around the ring. Kabayel had some success - especially after the mid-point - with his sudden offensive. Neither fighter was ever rocked or shocked but both were faded after eleven rounds. It was Kabayel who wanted more to get the twelfth and arguably the crucial round.
One judge had it 114-114 - a draw, while the other two awarded it to Kabayel: 115-113 and 115-114. Agit Kabayel, a young one at 25, acquired his belt early this year with a win over 26-1 Herve Hubeaux. He is 17-0, with 12 KOs, now. WBC #8 Chisora, with his fourth career split or majority loss, goes down to 27-8, 19 KOs.
Former world champion Scott Quigg (34-1-2, 25KOs) is back on the road to become a two-weight world champion in 2018 – after picking up a sixth round stoppage of Oleg Yefimovych (29-2-1, 16KOs) in a eliminator for the WBA featherweight title..
It was a battle of youth and power versus age and experience. Youth has clearly prevailed, although 36-year old Ukrainian, formerly a European 126lb titlist, gave Quigg, 29, fits in technique department.
However, it was nowhere about technique or style or boxing chess. The fight was all about power, as the British fighter wasted no time in getting to the veteran boxer. His punches - visibly felt by Yefimovich - were inflicting damage since the opening bell. Yefimovich connected with some good shots in the opening rounds but his power was unable to distract onrushing Quigg.
Showing tenacity and determination the British boxer continued to stalk the Ukrainian in rounds three and four. Oleg's counter punches got sparser as the fight progressed, his eyes starting to swell under the power of Quigg.
Referee Luis Pabon began to watch carefully after Yefimovich, as he looked like a beaten man. Battery continued in round five as Quigg induced a grimace of pain on Yefimovich's face with several well-placed body shots. Pabon asked Yefimovich about his further plans after the fifth, and the Ukrainian vehemently rejected any though of surrender. Yet he was still stopped by Pabon at 0:50 of the sixth - and rightfully so! - after eating several more combos from the Brit.
IBF #2, WBC #3 and WBO #10 Scott Quigg was announced as the WBA obligatory challenger after this fight.
Quigg is honing his skills in the Wild Card Gym with the hall of fame coach and they were ringside when WBA Super king Leo Santa Cruz and regular champion Abner Mares were in action in California two weeks ago, where both men won via stoppage.
Yefimovych is ranked at number four in the WBA the win for Quigg puts him right in the mix for a world title clash in 2018.