2020 Olympic Boxing Results – Day Nine – Notable Performances
Duke Ragan (USA) defeated Kurt Walker (IRE) – Our guy did it! Duke Ragan proved he is a big-game fighter, rising to the moment, and beating Walker in a razor-tight bout that now secures Ragan an Olympic medal. Ragan has been a stand-out fighter in the Olympics since he is a blue-collar fighter, who works more so in silence rather than loudly, but each and every fight he has improved in. Despite a split decision victory, Ragan did enough in this bout from start to finish, and more so, rocked Walker twice in the third round, to seal the deal. Good job, Duke, that was awesome to watch.
Samuel Takyi (GHA) defeated Ceiber Ávila (COL) – Now that was cool, watching Ghana get an Olympic medalist, and coming back from losing the first round badly. Takyi has volume, will and skill, and is a testament to the investment Ghana has made in boxing as he will be the first Olympic boxing medalist from Ghana.
Semi-finals | Ragan (USA) vs. Samuel Takyi (GHA) – This fight will be all about work rate. Ragan has had one of the most impressive Olympic runs and is more skilled, but he will have to take note of the heart of Takyi, who is going to throw a lot of punches and be rough. This is a bout you should watch as the winner of this bout will have a good chance at gold.
Lázaro Álvarez (CUB) defeated Chatchai-decha Butdee (THA) – Alvarez is a long-time amateur who has been winning for nearly a decade. Alvarez had a very shaky performance against Thailand’s Chatchai-decha Butdee, who I felt edged the affair over him. It will be interesting to see how Alvarez looks after this hard fight.
Albert Batyrgaziev (ROC) defeated Erdenebatyn Tsendbaatar (MGL) – Batyrgaziev knew what he had to do to medal, and accomplished the goal. Batyrgaziev laid the blueprint for how to win a fight, but it might not be a fight I revisit over-and-over again.
Semi-finals | Alvarez (CUB) vs. Batyrgaziev (ROC) – A battle of two of the best amateur fighters over the past ten years will see one of them falling short in what could be the last Olympic games for both of them. The two know what it takes to have success at this level, as we should be in for a very focused and high-level bout.
Pat McCormack (GBR) WO Aidan Walsh (IRE) – McCormack is the odds on favorite to win the tournament, and he is the U.K.’s biggest potential star coming out of the Olympics. The guy is the goods.
Roniel Iglesias (CUB) defeated Andrey Zamkovoy (ROC) – Iglesias has been shaky this whole tournament, and despite this win he still feels highly beatable. Iglesias’ best performance was against the U.S.’s Delante Johnson, but beyond that – Iglesias has looked like a fighter who relies more on movement, than punch itself.
Finals | McCormack (GBR) vs Iglesias (CUB) – Pat McCormack is a blue-chip fighter seemingly destined for the gold medal, and Iglesias though being a Cuban fighter should strike fear in your heart just feels a tier below McCormack, who at the very least should be a world title contender at some point, but has the hallmarks being a U.K. star with a gold medal.
Bronze Medal: Aidan Walsh (IRE), Andrey Zamkovoy (ROC)
Walsh was a solid professional amateur, who has a style that might not be best suited for the pros without changing some of his ways in the ring.
Zamkovoy is a solid amateur fighter, who can win a lot at the world level and will be heading home with some hardware. Zamkovoy has a style that is highly effective for shorter fights.
Oleksandr Khyzhniak (UKR) defeated Euri Cedeño (DOM) – Khyzhniak isn’t the type of fighter I am drawn to, a fighter with shaky defense, but relies on power to bail him, but he will now be an Olympic medalist. Cedeno battled him evenly and even gave Khyzhniak a standing-eight in the third round. The judges favored Khyzhniak’s pressure.
Eumir Marcial (PHI) defeated Arman Darchinyan (ARM) – One of the best performances of the day as Marcial steam rolled Darchinyan dropping him once, and for good measure sat him on his wallet, with the referee waving the bout off. Marcial is not just a big puncher, he might be the most capable fighter left who can mix offense and defense together as this division has a lot of fighters who can not blend the two, as you will see a fighter punch or go to high-guard, and know what they’re doing.
Semi-finals | Khyzhniak (UKR) vs. Marcial (PHI) – After seeing Marcial brutally knockout Vic Darchinyan’s cousin, Arman, and seeing the flaws Khyzhniak has on defense, barring the pressure breaking Marcial, Marcial could have another great Olympic moment.
Hebert Conceição (BRA) defeated Abilkhan Amankul (KAZ) – Conceicao is a strong pressure fighter looking to outwork you, his biggest assets is having solid defense while standing in front of an opponent, and letting his hands go the whole time.
Gleb Bakshi (ROC) defeated Darrelle Valsaint (HAI) – Valsaint will not get the credit he deserves in this bout as this was very close, and edged by Bakshi who used rough-house tactics and aggression to win the bout. Bakshi’s strongest attribute is he is a true fighter, and lives for conflict, and even though he is skilled, his meanness is what makes him elite.
Semi-Finals | Conceição (BRA) vs. Bakshi (ROC) – Bakshi was my favorite going into the tournament, and he should make it to the gold medal bout, but has a lot of the flaws of Khyzhniak, except he belives in defense. Bakshi is rugged, tough, physical and mean. Now we just have to see how he does against a strong, and aggressive inside fighter such as Conceicao.
Men’s Light Heavyweight
Ben Whittaker (GBR) defeated Imam Khataev – I have become a huge fan of Khataev, but going in I knew that Khataev would struggle in a three-round fight with the fast hands and movement of Ben Whittaker, who is a confident, special fighter. Whittaker was able to fight on the outside and not let Khataev land the big game-changing punch. Whittaker after the fight sat on the ropes, as he will now battle for gold.
Arlen López (CUB) defeated Loren Alfonso (AZE) – A battle of two Cubans as Alfonso fought for another country to help his family saw Lopez, the Cuban team’s fighter, Lopez, adjusted well and fought on the inside – a trait not seen much in Cuban boxing. Lopez gave an exhausted Alfonso a standing-eight count late.
Finals | Whittaker (GBR) vs. Lopez – Benjamin Whittaker is a great boxer with good handspeed, with the only rough aspect to his journey, is you can see him writing his autobiography during these fights, case-and-point, when he sat on the ring ropes after beating my favorite fighter in the Olympics, Imam Khataev. Whittaker, who is sporting gold hair, more than likely as to foreshadow the gold medal he wants to win, and a musiscan to boot, will have to face one of the better Cubans in the tournament in Arlen Lopez, a Cuban boxer, who can also fight on the inside. Whittaker should be favored as his speed is incredible, but never doubt Cuba in the Olympics.
Bronze Medal:Imam Khataev (ROC), Loren Alfonso (AZE)
Khataev is one of my favorite fighters in the Olympics though he came up short against Whittaker in the semi-finals, Khataev will be a great pro, and provided us with two highlight-reel KOs in the Olympic Games.
Loren Alfonso, who left Cuba to fight for another country, proved himself game, just he couldn’t get past his fellow Cuban, who just had a little bit more to his game.
Men’s Super Heavyweight
Bakhodir Jalolov (UZB) defeated Satish Kumar (IND) – Jalolov outclassed Kumar, but at the same time we have yet to see the dominant murderous puncher in Jalolov we have seen in the pros and highlight reel. Let’s hope Jalolov is just waiting for the final rounds. Jalolov’s pride of his home country is great to see.
Frazer Clarke (GBR) won by disqualification over Mourad Aliev – Aliev was one of my favorite fighters in this tournament, and sadly his run will be cut short by politics. As for Clarke, he comes off as a feel-good story, making the Olympic team on his third try and now will leave with an Olympic medal. The bout was ended because of a point deduction to Aliev for a head clash, Aliev got anger, and the bout was stopped. It was unclear why he was disqualified.
Semi-Finals | Jalolov vs. Clarke – I want to see Jalolov show more urgency in the medal rounds as so far he has just gone through the motions, that being said we have to see if they allow Frazer Clarke to fight in the semi-finals due to his cut as Jalolov might get a walkover to the finals. I hope this fight happens as Clarke will make Jalolov fight an honest fight.
Richard Torrez Jr. (USA) defeated Dainier Peró (CUB) – After losing the first round, Torrez Jr weaponized the pace of the fight to a speed Pero could not maintain. By the end of the third round, Torrez Jr. had won two-out-of-the-three-rounds easily, with the only blemish being he was cut in the bout. The southpaw heavyweight who is a tad undersized by modern standards, now has a medal, and should be a lock for the gold medal match.
Kamshybek Kunkabayev (KAZ) defeated Ivan Veriasov (ROC) – This was a rough one to watch. Congrats to Kunkabayev for getting the win, but being the last fight of day nine helped this bout none.
Semi-Finals | Torrez Jr. vs. Kunkabayev – Unless Torrez Jr’s cut that was sustained during the Pero fight gets worse or his chins shows ill-effects, Torrez holds every advantage over Kunkabayev, with the biggest being a weaponized pace, that will more than likely be the difference. We’re very close to an Olympic rematch between Jalolov vs. Torrez Jr.
Buse Naz Çakıroğlu (TUR) defeated Jutamas Jitpong (THA) – Çakıroğlu’s whole style is to be awkward. She is a good fighter, but her art is to keep her opponent constantly off-balance. Turkey produces good Olympic fighters on a consistent basis and Çakıroğlu is now their next medalist. Çakıroğlu proved very well why she is the #1 seed at the top of the bracket. This is also the first time Turkey has had a women’s boxing team.
Huang Hsiao-wen (TPE) defeated Nina Radovanović (SRB) – Hsiao-wen is the tallest fighter in this weight class, and has an Inspector Gadget-like build with long arms. Radovanovic, who had been one of my favorites based on her aggressive style and temperament, was unable to close the distance against the much taller fighter, who outboxed her.
Semi-Finals | Çakıroğlu vs. Hsiao-wen It is hard not to favor Çakıroğlu as she is built to do well at this event with a style that is awkward and unpredictable, as well as a physically strong, but Hsiao-wen, has a build and a style that can beat anyone. This will be interesting to see, and the winner of this bout will have earned their way to gold medal round.
Tsukimi Namiki (JPN) defeated Ingrit Valencia (COL) – Namiki is one of the most complete fighters in the whole tournament. Namiki is a smart elusive boxer, who knows how to win rounds. Namiki is all about volume with lateral movement.
Stoyka Krasteva (BUL) defeat Chang Yuan (CHN) – The bout wasn’t one of the more fan-friendly affairs but wasa style clash as Krasteva’s bigger frame and movement helped guide her to victory. I thought the bout was a lot closer than the judges did as Yuan had a lot of success early.
Semi-Finals | Namiki vs Krasteva – Namiki to me is a clear favorite as Krasteva is coming into the medal rounds with a shaky performance, as Namiki is steadily improving. A solid match-up, but I think we see Japan in two bouts for gold medals in this Olympic Games.