The day of the surprises at the EUBC European Men’s Elite Boxing Championships

25 May 2022 News

Fantastic contests were held on the third competition day at the EUBC European Men’s Elite Boxing Championships in the Armenian capital today.  The winners at the flyweight (51kg), featherweight (57kg), lightweight (60kg), middleweight (75kg) and cruiserweight (86kg) advanced to the last eight in Yerevan. Several of the seeded boxers were eliminated during the afternoon and evening sessions on the day of the surprises.

Altogether 219 boxers from 39 nations are fighting for the 52 available medals in the Armenian capital. The EUBC European Men’s Elite Boxing Championships holds at the 13 official weight categories: 48kg, 51kg, 54kg, 57kg, 60kg, 63.5kg, 67kg, 71kg, 75kg, 80kg, 86kg, 92kg and +92kg. Mr. Adam Kusior of Poland is the Technical Delegate of the EUBC European Men’s Elite Boxing Championships in Yerevan.

The last day of preliminaries will feature in the fourth competition day at the EUBC European Men’s Elite Boxing Championships in Yerevan, Armenia on Thursday. All of the actions will be live streamed in the EUBC YouTube channel.

The bout of the day

Bulgaria’s Radoslav Rosenov is the defending EUBC European U22 Champion, the EUBC European Youth Champion and the Strandja Memorial Tournament winner. The 19-year-old talent was seeded as No.1 at the lightweight (60kg) and he is one the stars of the championships despite of his age. Rosenov was nervous in his opening contest against Slovakia’s Viliam Tanko and his opponent kept him on long in the first round. The Slovakian used the perfect tactics against the smaller Bulgarian and his patient style of boxing delivered a sensational success for him today. 

The surprises of the day

Belgium’s Vasile Usturoi was member of their national team in the previous years and he had excellent preparations for this championship with medals and titles from various international tournaments. He was not the favourite against Ireland’s EUBC European U22 Champion Adam Hession but he proved a great first round and landed the better shots from longer distance. Usturoi surprised his Irish featherweight (57kg) opponent with his effective long-range tactics and he had the advantage on the scorecards after six minutes. The 25-year-old Belgian lost his right preliminary bout to the World Champion Jahmal Harvey in Belgrade last October but this time he opened his campaign with a success over a top boxer.

Hungary’s Roland Veres switched from kick-boxing to boxing only a few years ago and he is not an experienced in the international stage yet. The 22-year-old Hungarian suffered a serious hand injury at the annual Bocskai Memorial Tournament but recovered until the start of the EUBC European Men’s Elite Boxing Championships. Veres used smart tactics against Armenia’s veteran Karen Tonakanyan and surprisingly he had the advantage on the scorecards. The Hungarian lightweight (60kg) boxer used his longer hands effectively in the first and third rounds to win the very last bout of the day causing a big surprise.

The Round-Up

Ukraine’s Dmytro Zamotaev achieved a bronze medal at the Doha 2015 AIBA World Boxing Championships which is his career highlight until today. The experienced flyweight (51kg) boxer dictated the tempo in the first round against Germany’s Christopher Goman and he had a tight advantage on the scorecards after three minutes. Zamotaev increased his speed and tempo in the second round which delivered Ukrainian dominance. Goman’s defence was destroyed in the third when the Romanian referee confirmed Zamotaev’s RSC victory in the second bout of the afternoon session.

Israel’s David Alaverdian participated first in the elite competitions ten years ago and he decided to return from the professional world. Alaverdian, who has strong Armenian roots, used different kind of tactics and he was effective from closer and longer range against Greece’s National Champion Panagiotis Akritidis. The Israeli flyweight (51kg) boxer used his Greek opponent’s faults to land his counter-punches with good timing and he had significant advantage after six minutes of fight. Alaverdian controlled all of the three rounds with excellent performance today marching to the last eight in this strong weight class.

Italy’s Federico Serra almost decided his Round of 16 contest at the flyweight (51kg), he knocked down Turkey’s Ramazan Demir after a few seconds. The Swedish referee counted the Turkish boxer twice in the first minute but Demir survived these dangerous moments and he could continue the preliminary bout. Serra had the chance to save his fuel to the quarter-final and managed to win today’s contest easily. His teammate, the AIBA World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Salvatore Cavallaro dominated his contest against Czech Republic’s Milos Bartl which bout was held in Ring A in the same time as Serra’s bout.

Hungary’s Robert Cservenka eliminated Austria’s Marcel Meinl in the first day of the championship and he surprised Scotland’s Samuel Hickey in the opening round of their Round of 16 contest. The Hungarian landed tough hooks and uppercuts and used his in-fighting style of boxing to keep the control. Cservenka looked slightly better after six minutes but Hickey changed his rhythm in the beginning of the last round still in time to manage his success. The 22-year-old Scotsman, who will compete at the upcoming Commonwealth Games too, landed multiple shots and his last round was enough to turn back the contest.

France’s EUBC European U22 Boxing Championships bronze medallist Moreno Fendero is a top talent at the middleweight (75kg) but he had a difficult tactical job against Norway’s Mindaugas Gedminas. Fendero was too short for the Norwegian and could not find the best distance against Gedminas who moved around the ring. The Norwegian had strong defence today and despite he received a few tough shots from Fendero, his counter-shots decided their Round of 16 bout.

Germany’s Kevin Schumann was silver medallist at the EUBC European U22 Boxing Championships last year and the Cologne Boxing World Cup winner was seeded as number 2 in Yerevan. Michael Timm’s pupil faced Armenia’s Vakhtang Harutyunyan who replaced Arman Darchinyan in the national team at the middleweight (75kg). The 23-year-old German landed several body shots and jabs in the first round against the smaller Armenian who received strong support from the local fans and gave in everything to do a surprise today. Schumann had hard job against the Armenian but he landed multiple shots in the third round to win the exciting contest.

Armenia’s Rafayel Hovhannisyan is one of their new and strong next generation members who won several contest in the major youth championships in 2018 and in 2019. The 21-year-old boxer won the cruiserweight (86kg) in their National Championships and he proved an enthusiastic performance in the third day of boxing against Bulgaria’s Kristiyan Dimitrov. Hovhannisyan was quicker and he found the wholes on Dimitrov’s double-defence with jabs managing the clear advantage after three minutes. The young Armenian was better in all aspects of boxing than his Bulgarian rival and secured his place in the last eight.

Georgiy Kushitashvili represented Russia at the 2019 AIBA World Boxing Championships in Yekaterinburg but he was not able to fight out his place in their top team once again. He decided to switch to Georgia, to his homeland and joined their national squad this year to impress the experts with his boxing skills. Kushitashvili competes at the cruiserweight (86kg) in this championship and he is the main gold medal contender which he proved in his debuting contest against Italy’s Davide Brito. The new Georgian star was better than his Italian opponent in all of the ranges and bowed out his rival with world-class performance.

Montenegro’s Petar Lijesevic achieved a historic silver medal for his country at the 2021 AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships. The currently 20-year-old young talent attends on his first EUBC European Men’s Elite Boxing Championships but he was confident in the first round against Moldova’s National Champion Andrei Zaplitnii. Lijesevic had only one short weak period in the whole fight and he proved an energetic performance today. He won this cruiserweight (86kg) bout by unanimous decision and advanced to the last eight of the championship.

Spain’s Jose Quiles and Germany’s Murat Yildirim reached strong international results since 2017 and the two experienced lightweight (60kg) boxers had to meet each other. The AIBA World Boxing Championships quarter-finalist German boxer opened the first round better than his Spanish opponent and the judges favoured him after three minutes. The EUBC European Championships bronze medallist Spaniard turned up the heat, he was quicker in the exchanges in the second and third rounds to turn back this fantastic contest.

The quotes of the day

“The task was to beat my opponent and take another victory for Ukraine. My biggest strength is the motivation, I want to win all of the bouts in Yerevan and take the gold medal to Ukraine and dedicate it to the armed forces,” said Ukraine’s Dmytro Zamotaev after his preliminary contest.

“I have strong Armenian roots therefore it was amazing to box in Yerevan in front of this fantastic crowd. My Greek opponent moved only forward and I used the angles better to catch him. I spent long time in AOB boxing but I decided to return from the professionals where I had six contests. My objective is to get a medal in this championship,” said Israel’s David Alaverdian.

“I believe that I am in better shape than last time at the World Boxing Championships in Belgrade. I am confident and I want to win the gold medal in this European Boxing Championships,” said Italy’s Salvatore Cavallaro who dominated his middleweight (75kg) debut against his Czech opponent.

“This was not my best fight, I am not satisfied with this performance but I am sure I will do it better next in the quarter-final. My coaches said in the second break that I have to win the last round with dominance and I made it. It should have been easier today but I hope I will get another European medal after my junior and U22 podiums,” said Scotland’s Samuel Hickey after his difficult contest.

“I knew my opponent’s strengths and weaknesses as we watched all of his previous contests. We developed the best strategy against him and Fendero was not able to catch me today. He is strong but I was smarter, more disciplined and my coaches told me that I could follow the strategy perfectly. Let’s see my next quarter-final opponent and I am sure we will find the best tactics against him,” added Norway’s Mindaugas Gedminas. 

“I boxed against the Armenian at the second time but this one was more difficult and he looked stronger than in our first meeting. Luckily I have a wonderful coach, Mr. Michael Timm in the ringside and he gave me strong support and advice to win this contest,” said Germany’s middleweight (75kg) No.1, Kevin Schumann.

“This opening was more difficult for me as at the World Boxing Championships against the US boy who claimed the gold medal there. The Irish boxer was brave, he had the power and the strong attacks but I could handle him with lot of footwork. I had to use my second hand in the counter-attacks and followed my coaches’ tactics,” said Belgium’s Vasile Usturoi who delivered one of the sensations of the day.

“My Bulgarian opponent is a fantastic young talent and I was sure that he will lose the control due to his age. I was smarter, and the only the difference between us was the experience today. I felt from the first seconds that I can beat him and of course my target is not only the medal but to win all of my contests in Yerevan,” said Slovakia’s Viliam Tanko who eliminated the Seed No.1.

“I was not enough fast in the opening round and my coaches told me to move forward from the second. My German opponent looked strong and it was a very difficult first contest in this championship. I am expecting that I can meet with the Lithuanian boxer in the last eight and our record is 1-1 from the past,” said Spain’s Jose Quiles.

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