By Alexey Sukachev
This particular event, billed as “Danke, ZDF!”, was the last boxing broadcast on ZDF after the German network had chosen to end their relationship with the sport, even though it had good ratings, and not to prolong an agreement with the UBP. Through eight years of mutual partnership the Universum Box-Promotion loaded a big number (well over a hundred) of highly entertaining, exciting nights of boxing, while ZDF did a fascinating work of delivering a professional commentary and telecast on its behalf. It's sad we won't see anything of this kind on ZDF in the near future...
A battle of two unbeaten middleweights turned into another possible black eye for the Sweet Science and yet another sample of infamous "hometown cooking", as the WBC middleweight "interim champion" Sebastian Zbik (easily beatable but still unbeaten at 30-0, 10 KOs) "retained" his regalia with a scandalous twelve-round unanimous decision over determined Argentinean challenger Jorge Sebastian Heiland (16-1, 8 KOs).
Almost every round could have been seen as a whole fight in miniature. WBA #9 and WBC #12 Heiland predictably was an aggressor delivering a hard, heated battle to the defending titlist, who tried to cover up in a shell-like defense. Heiland was working Zbik's body with series of long, thudding hooks and had a good share of success landing a big number of them. He was also successful in finding a room for his straight right hand. It's to be said that the German champion tried hard and had some success with some counter combos. However, his defense has never been as tight and as effective as in his last outing against Italian Domenico Spada. Heiland was often penetrating eat with some wide shots and had Zbik on ropes several times throughout a fight. German's rounds were the first couple and some stanzas in the midst of the contest. The Argentinean fighter clearly took the second and the last quarter and also finished this bout in style pounding Zbik from pillar to post.
After twelve a bit close rounds, judges saw it 117-111 (twice - Bela Florian and Robin Delpierre) and 116-111 (Luigi Muratore) - for Zbik. This particular reporter, being extremely generous and giving an edge in even rounds to the champion, scored it 115-113 - for Heiland. BoxingScene/Allboxing Russian reporter Alexey Uralets saw it 118-110 - also for the guest fighter, as did a majority of Russian fight fans, who were able to see a broadcast of this fight. The third questionable decision for the champion in his last four fights (alongside UD over Domenico Spada in their first fight and SD over Emanuele della Rossa).
In a staying-busy light middleweight fight, Poland's Mariusz Cendrowski (20-2-2, 7 KOs) outpointed Czech Bronislav Kubin (10-3, 5 KOs) unanimously over eight with scores: 79-73 (twice) and 79-74.
Germany-based Armenian Khoren Gevor (31-5, 16 KOs) tried very hard but found himself on a wrong end of a suprisingly wide unanimous decision after his third ever title attempt against still-WBA super middleweight beltholder Dmitry Sartison (27-1, 17 KOs). Gevor, who is still ranked IBF #9 and WBO #11 at middleweight, made a sudden leap towards a heavier weight class and got his chance against a fellow clubmate by receiving the #5 spot in a new WBA ranks.
Smaller but more aggressive Gevor tried to stalk bigger, heavier Sartison in the first three rounds but was very unlucky in doing so. Sartizon easily moved out of Armenian's range of fire avoiding lazy jabs and unprepared attacks on his way out. He also tagged Gevor with hard left hands and added big right bombs on occasion. Gevor landed a few body jabs but when he was finally finding himself on the inside, the Kazakhstani native (now representing Germany) did well in clinches and wrestling. Round four was big for the defending titlist. He was involved in several heated exchanges and finally landed a major counter right to stagger the challenger badly. Gevor seemingly touched a canvas with his glove but referee Rafael Ramos chose not to recognise it asa knockdown. Sartison was unable to finish his job.
In round five, Gevor mounted an occasional comeback and took this stanza. However, in round six he was deducted a point for excessive roughing mixed with low blows. Rounds seven and eight were pretty even but it looked like Gevor finally caught his second wind. It turned to be just a vision in the ninth, which was clearly German's round. However, Gevor indeed got considerably better in championship rounds and took either all of them or at least a couple. The Armenian was fighting aggressively, connected with an assortment of body punches while fatigued Sartison was in survival mode.
After a heated fight, all three judges saw it in favour of Dmitry Sartison - 117-110, 117-109 (!) and 115-112 - thus helping him to retain his WBA 168lb belt and also take an unofficial recognition of probably the best (aside Arthur Abraham) post-Soviet fighter. BoxingScene saw it 115-112 - also for Sartizon. Gevor lost to Abraham and Felix Sturm in his previous title efforts. WBA "super champion" Andre Ward is universally recognized as the best fighter under the World Boxing Association's aegis.
In a possibly important non-televized heavyweight eight-rounder, former long-time cruiserweight king, then unsuccessful heavyweight world title challenger and now rated WBC/WBA #12 contender, Juan Carlos Gomez (48-2, 36 KOs) of Cuba unanimously outpointed well-known upset specialist Zack Page (21-30-2, 7 KOs). Scores of 80-72 on all three cards. Also Artur Matern of Germany moved up to 5-1, with 3 KOs, after the sixth-round unanimous decision over Latvian journeyman Semjons Moroseks (6-12-1, 2 KOs).
In a fight between two comebacking fighters, ex-WBO super middleweight titleholder Karoly Balzsay (22-2, 16 KOs) looked predictably rusty but ultimately got the better of French veteran Aziz Daari (24-15-4, 20 KOs) in five heated rounds. IBF #11 Hungarian, who lost his last two to the next champion Robert Stieglitz and then-challenger Eduard Gutknecht, was hit too much for a fighter of his level in the first three rounds, while aggressive Daari tried to stalk him around the ring and not without his share of success. Balzsay, boxing from the outside, improved much in round four and began catching slightly fatigued Frenchman on his way in with the straight right hand. He also landed several flush two-punch combinations paying back to Daari. The contest ended suddenly at .34 of the fifth stanza. Balzsay went after his opponent, both pugilists connected with counter left hands to rock themselves but then, when Daari was moving forward, thhe Hungarian landed yet another straight left cross, which floored the Frenchman badly. He beat the count but was too wobbly to let it go on, and the referee stopped the fight to the slight displeasure of Daari.
In his sixth professional fight, 2009 Milano world amateur champion and rising junior middleweight prospect Jack Culcay-Keth (6-0, 4 KOs) got his fourth win inside the distance, stopping overmatched Romanian Ionut Trandafir Ilie (13-5-1, 1 KO) in four rounds. Former Romanian lightweight champion was finally stopped at 2:18 of the aforementioned stanza and suffered his third straight defeat this year.