Wolves lock jaws on 1st place in Group B: Astana Arlans win Baku Fires 3:2
In the light flyweight category (-49 kg), Kazakhstan's Temirtas Zhussupov faced a WSB debutant Rasul Saliev. Zhussupov demonstrated an outstanding performance in the 4th season as a debutant and returned to showcase his mastery once again. The Azeri boxer was outclassed by the aggressive Arlan through and through. Zhussupov brought the first victory of the night with 46:49, 46:49, 45:50 to Kazakhstan.
Arlans sent one to its debutants Nursultan Koschegulov to a harsh test against an experienced Azeri fighter Magommed Gurbanov in the bantamweight category (-56 kg). Despite his eagerness to win, Koschegulov spent more time in defence. Gubanov was fired up and attacked the Kazakhstani boxer in full force. The Azerbaijani team lost their second fight of the 5th season against Caciques Venezuela with the score of 4:1. The team needed to redeem themselves in the fight against the Arlans. That’s exactly what Gubanov was attempting at and succeeded. Koschegulov lost his debut fight against Gubanov brining the score to 1:1.
A steady Kazakh fighter Askhat Ualikhanov faced an experienced boxer Gaybatulla Gadzhialiyev in the light welterweight (-64 kg). Ualikhanov was slower in the first two rounds, but called up his strength in the third round. Yet, Gadzhialiyev retained hold of the match during the remaining time. The Azerbaijani boxer won the Arlan 48:47, 49:46, 50:45. The Baku Fires led 2:1.
The next fight was in the unexpected heavyweight category (-91 kg) instead of the middleweight category (-75 kg). Vasiliy Levit, a stern and undefeated boxer capped for Kazakhstan, fought against Rahil Mammadli, a debutant. Levit was once again unstoppable and merciless. In the second round, the referee stopped the fight after a series of punches from the Arlan. Levit won Mammadli with a TKO. The score evened to 2:2.
The middleweight fight was the decider of the night and arguably the most interesting, as two completely different boxing styles collided in the ring. Arlan’s middleweight Meirim Nursultanov fought against a veteran of the Baku Fires Jaba Khositashvili from Georgia. It was Nursultanov’s second fight in the new for him weight division. The former welter weight (-69 kg) Nursultanov TKOed a Venezuelan Juan Carlos Rodriguez Patino in the first week of the 5th season. This time in Guba, the technical Kazakh boxer proceeded in his well-paced manner. Khositashvili showered aggressive attacks and counter attacks from the get go. In three rounds, Khositashvili pushed Nursultanov down three times, literally. In the third round, the Georgian boxer lost his vigor yet kept on clinching, while Nursultanov threw a series of technical combinations. In the last round, the Arlan went into a counter attack mode not allowing Khositashvili to clinch him anymore. In the end, the referee held Nursultanov’s glove up. The Arlan saved his team from the first loss and finished the night with 3:2 in favor of Kazakhstan.
Meirim Nursultanov vs Jaba Khositashvili
The Astana Arlans locked their jaws to the sweet spot on the top of the Group B ranking. The Kazakhstani team retained their first place with 9 points (11 wins/4 losses). Unexpectedly, they are followed by the USA Knockouts who are having the best start of the season ever (9 points, 10W/5L). The newcomers Puerto Rico Hurricanes pounded their way to the third place in the ranking (6 points, 6W/8L).
The Cuba Domadores naturally took the first place in the Group A (9 points, 15W/0L). The Champions of the 4th season are followed by Ukraine Otomans (9 points, 10W/5L) and Mexico Guerreros (6 points, 9W/6L).
Next, the Astana Arlans are facing the USA Knockouts on February 8 in Karaganda, Kazakhstan.
By Gyuzel Kamalova
- World Series of Boxing
- Astana Arlans