BIBA Afghanistan License Boxers Allah Dad Rahimi, Zafar Azizi & Waisuddin Ghawsi

BIBA Afghanistan License Boxers Allah Dad Rahimi, Zafar Azizi & Waisuddin Ghawsi

L-R Zafar Azizi, Allah Dad Rahimi and Waisuddin Ghawsi

Back in July the British & Irish Boxing Authority (BIBA) and the Afghanistan All Martial Arts Federation (AAMAF) announced that they have joined forces to create the new professional boxing sanctioning organization BIBA Afghanistan to develop boxing in the region as well as sanction events throughout the Country.

Virtually immediately the news broke local Amateur boxers began discussions with BIBA Afghanistan’s Secretary General Shukrullah Fazili. The first of these boxers, Zafar Azizi and Waisuddin Ghawsi have now made the transition from Amateur to Professional status under the BIBA Afghanistan banner.

In addition to the two Amateur boxers, one fight pro Allah Dad Rahimi has also received his BIBA Afghanistan license.

On announcing the news of the first boxers to receive their licenses, BIBA Afghanistan Secretary General Shukrullah Fazili said.

“It is a proud day for BIBA Afghanistan, to license our first boxers.

Allah Dad Rahimi, Zafar Azizi and Waisuddin Ghawsi are very good boxers and we look forward to them boxing, in Afghanistan and Internationally, soon.

The interest from boxers is overwhelming and we already have further applications for BIBA Afghanistan licenses being processed.”

 

Khan and Newell in Sensational Knockout Form Reign Supreme in Bradford

Khan and Newell in Sensational Knockout Form Reign Supreme in Bradford

Report: Gianluca Di Caro
Photos Courtesy of Joe Ibbotson

The boxing scene in the North of England is really booming, especially around the cities of Leeds and Bradford. One of the main reasons for the increase of professional boxing events in the area is due to Bradford’s very own reigning World Boxing Union (WBU), Global Boxing Union (GBU) and World Boxing Confederation (WBC) World Champion Tasif Khan, who for the past couple of years has been working closely with Leeds based promoter Bridie Murtagh to bring stylish Boxing Dinner Shows to the area.

The latest of these took place at the Royal Taj, formerly the Connaught Rooms, in Bradford, which not only featured the aforementioned Tasif Khan himself in action, against Tanzania’s Julias Kisarawe, but also heralded the return of unbeaten Lightweight prospect Justin Newell from Leeds, who faced Latvian Aleksandrs Birkenbergs

Besides the local lads on the card, exciting Super Welterweight prospect Chris Wood from Middlesbrough was in action against Belfast’s Marty Kayes, however two top class International bouts scheduled for the event, a ten round Middleweight contest between Ishmael Tetteh and Philip Kotey, as well as an eight round Welterweight contest between Frank Dodzi and Justice Addy, failed to materialise due to visas for three of the boxers failing to arrive in time.

Whilst disappointing that these two fights didn’t go ahead, there was more than enough action to keep the fans happy, as promoter Bridie Murtagh arranged for two exhibition bouts featuring local lads to replace the Internationals ahead of the pro element.

First up was Chris Wood against Marty Kayes in a four rounder.

What a cracking start to the pro section, it was all action right from the opening bell, Wood was clearly fired up and went on the attack, closing down his far more experienced opponent before letting rip with a vast array of combinations at every conceivable opportunity. Kayes though is as savvy as they come, would cover up and seemed more than content to let the fired up youngster get his shots off before countering.

After four scintillating rounds the referee’s scorecard unsurprisingly read as a 40-36 points victory for the Teesider Chris Wood.

Next up was unbeaten Justin Newell in a six rounder against the very tough Latvian Aleksandrs Birkenbergs.

Newell was on fire, slick movement and very fast hands – Birkenbergs was no walk over and landed a cracking right hand about midway through the round, which lit the blue touch-paper for Newell, who went hard on the attack throwing some tasty big shots to body and head, which ultimately led to Birkenbergs taking a visit to the canvas. This kid’s tough, he was straight up and going toe to toe with Newell until the end of the round.

Round two was fantastic to watch, both lads giving no quarter – beautiful boxing from both, but Newell’s class proved just too much for the plucky Latvian as the Leeds lad piled some serious pressure in the second half of the fight before letting rip with big double handed salvos that sent Birkenbergs to the deck in the dying seconds of the round, no matter how hard he tried Birkenbergs just couldn’t make the count – great win on his return to the fray for Newell who won by TKO, the time would you believe 2 minutes and 59 seconds of round two.

The headline fight see WBU, GBU and WBC World Champion take on Tanzania’s Julias Kisarawe in a ten round non-championship contest, instead of the scheduled twelve round World Boxing Confederation (WBC) Super Flyweight title defence for Khan, due to lateness of the visa arriving for Kisarawe to complete the necessary Championship paperwork for the contest to be sanctioned by the WBC.

First round started fast and see Kisarawe taking the fight to Khan, however the Bradford lad stood his ground and picked his shots for maximum effect

More of the same in round two, except this time it was Khan that took the fight to Kisarawe.

Round three see Khan really start to get in a flow, regularly backing his opponent up before letting rip with wickedly fast double handed salvos, the power and speed in Khan’s shots finally had the desired effect and the super tough Tanzanian took a very brief trip to the canvas.

On the restart Kisarawe went hard on the attack, throwing seriously solid lefts in an attempt to do unto Khan what the Bradford lad did to him moments before (with 14 KO wins on his record Kisarawe is very capable of doing just that)

Round four was an outright war and fascinating to watch, as was round five and six but for very different reasons. Khan stepped not just one gear but at least two or three and corralled the Tanzanian into a corner and just plain bombarded him with double handed Exocets throughout

More of the same in round seven but this time Khan managed to penetrate Kisarawe’s world class defence and sent him to the canvas for the second time.

Kisarawe managed to make the count but it was clear for all to see that he was in some distress, so much so that referee James Ancliff had no option but to stop the contest on the one minute twelve second mark.

What followed then was a good thirty minute celebration in the ring by Tasif Khan, his team AND many of the fans!!!!

Have to say the Khan/Murtagh co-promoted shows I’ve attended have always been top class, however this event, even though a couple of fights short, was by far the best one yet, the fights were all beautifully matched all action affairs, what more could any fan of the pugilistic arts wish for. Can’t wait for the next, which I hear is going to be in December.

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Hill Secures Celtic Crown as McIlroy Returns In Knockout Fashion in Ayr.

Hill Secures Celtic Crown as McIlroy Returns In Knockout Fashion in Ayr.

Report by Gianluca Di Caro
Photos courtesy Kevin Thorne

It may have been unseasonably wet and windy on Saturday evening, but the inclement weather didn’t deter the local fans turning out in force for three division World Champion Lee McAllister’s latest promotional offering at Ayr Town Hall on Saturday night.

Prior to the first fight of the night, MC Douglas McAdam gave a passionate, yet solemn, eulogy for Scottish Boxing Legend Toby Dixon, father of former World Champion Scott Dixon, who had sadly passed away the previous Sunday aged 87 years, followed by a ten-bell salute.

Following the ten-bell salute was the opening contest, between Prestwick’s Leon Roberts and Liverpool’s Paul Peers was an absolute barnstormer of epic proportions.

Right from the opening bell, both young warriors charged into centre ring and locked horns in a true Gladiatorial Battle Royale that thrilled the ensemble audience for the entirety of the contest.

After four all action rounds, the fans showed their appreciation, for such a truly excellent, closely fought contest, to both fighters with a standing ovation, and that’s before Referee Edward Law’s scorecards were even read out, no surprise then that when it was and showed local lad Robert’s receiving the victor’s laurels the decibel levels went through the roof.

Next up was another cracking fight between Aberdeen’s Nathan Beattie and Belfast’s Marty Kayes. Whilst not quite an all out war like the preceding bout, it was a fantastic technical contest that thrilled the fans in a different way.

The two lads clearly know each other very well, no surprise since they had sparred previously, as well as fought each other on Beattie’s debut. This personal knowledge of the others style, could easily have had a negative effect, making for a boring fight, but not in this case.

Both protagonists showcased their superb pugilistic skills and exceptional ring craft throughout the contest, as with the previous fight, many of the rounds were very close, so it wasn’t a foregone conclusion just who would have their hand raised at the end of six hard fought rounds, however the Scottish fans were not to be disappointed as it was Beattie that got the nod from scoring Referee Edward Law.

Have to say the next bout, between Irvine’s Sandy Robb and Belfast’s Ryan Kilpatrick looked like it was going to be another thrilling all out war for the first minute or so, as the dynamic duo planted themselves in centre ring trading power punch after power punch.

However, Robb’s superior experience came into play, the canny Scot dipped under the Irishman’s leading arm, before letting rip with a massive pinpoint perfect body shot to send Kilpatrick down to the canvas and take the win by first round TKO right on the one minute and thirty second mark.

Next up see the return of Irvine’s very own George McIlroy against Stockport’s Will Cairns, for the Professional Boxing Council (PBC) International Silver Middleweight Championship.

The partisan crowd gave Cairns a very warm welcome, as they had for every single fighter throughout the evening, however once again the decibel levels went through the roof when their man McIlroy began his ring-walk.

Round one was a hard fought affair, both protagonists were clearly fired up and determined to become the first ever Professional Boxing Council (PBC) Champion, so much so that control of the round changed hands so often in the early stages, however that was soon to change, when McIlroy landed a powerful body shot to send Cairns to the canvas in the second half of the round.

Much to the delight of the crowd, McIlroy’s confidence grew in the early stages of round two, the canny Scot controlling the proceedings seemingly with ease, don’t get me wrong Cairns had his fair share of success in the second, just that he was being a wee bit more cautious than he had in the first.

More of the same in the third, with McIlroy seemingly controlling the majority of the action, however saying that, the shot of the round was definitely Cairns, who cleverly engineered a sensational move that see him open up the excellent guard of the Scotsman for the merest fraction of a second, but more than enough for Cairns to land a massive right to the granite chin of McIlroy.

McIlroy stepped up the pace early in the fourth, corralling Cairns in to a corner on a number of occasions, the Englishman managed to fight his way out in true style a couple of times before the Scot got through his guard and sent him to the canvas for a second time.

Following the restart McIlroy was all over Cairns like a rash, the Englishman maybe rashly decided that attack would be the best form of defense, whilst landing a few good shots this action left him open and McIlroy didn’t need a second invitation, he just walked Cairns back towards his own corner before letting rip with a massive onslaught ending with another big right to the body to send Cairns down once more.

Cairns made it to his feet but was clearly unsteady, sensibly referee Edward Law decided not to take any risk and waved the fight off on the one minute and twenty-five second mark of the fourth round.

Headline bout of the night was a second PBC Championship contest, this time between World Boxing Foundation (WBF) United Kingdom Champion Symington’s Sammy Hill and Dundalk, Ireland’s Michael Kelly for the PBC Celtic Welterweight Silver Crown.

Without doubt this proved to be the perfect fight to close out a fantastic night of pugilistic action, it was one helluva closely fought battle that could have gone either way.

In fact by three quarters of the way through I was convinced the result was going to be a draw. The all action bout see control switch not just round by round, but seemingly minute by minute.

In the penultimate round Hill stepped up the pace, just as it seemed Kelly was beginning to fade a little. This proved to be a pivotal point in the contest, as Hill went on to secure the win and his second Championship belt in as many contests by a mere two points.

Following the event promoter Lee McAllister, not only praised the boxers but also announced that he would be back in Championship action later this year, on a self-promoted event at the Beach Ballroom in Aberdeen on the 20th October.

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