The Italian girls and the Russian boys made perfect semi-final day in Sofia10 September 2019
The 40 female and male semi-final contests were held in the sixth competition day at the EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships which is holding in the Sofia Sports Hall. Out of the 23 medallist nations 14 advanced to the finals of the continental event. The Italian girls and the Russian boys remained unbeaten in the day of the semi-finals in Sofia.
The following 37 nations and 339 boxers are taking part in the EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships: Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and Wales.
Bout of the day
One of the best talents in female boxing in the whole world is England’s Youth Olympic Games winner Caroline Dubois wo has got still unbeaten career record. The 18-year-old English lightweight (60kg) boxer won three EUBC titles as well in the previous three years and continued her amazing winning path in the semi-finals of the Sofia event. Dubois was a hard target for Ukraine’s Amina Abramova and dominated the fight from the first seconds achieving the triumph unanimously. England’s star will be meeting with her main rival Russia’s Nune Asatrian which could be one of the most anticipated fights of the finals. Dubois defeated her Russian opponent in the final of the AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships and also in the 2018 EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships.
Surprise of the day
Lithuania’s Gabriele Diekontaite achieved medals in a few international tournaments but for the Sofia event she decided to move down to the middleweight (75kg). Her semi-final opponent was Ireland’s Lisa O’Rourke whose elder sister Aoife became European Elite Champion in Madrid 10 days ago. The Irish boxer was not able to repeat her previous performances and the Lithuanian used up the chance to make a surprise in Sofia. Diekontaite advanced to the finals where she will be meeting for the gold with Turkey’s Sena Erdogan who has done also a major surprise on Day6. The Turkish boxer was brave and caught several times France’s top favourite Youth Olympic Games silver medallist Tallya Brillaux who recovered from her injury but did not show top shape in Sofia yet.
Bulgaria’s best female boxer Melek Zakifova had hard road to the semi-finals of the light flyweight (48kg) but she proved energetic boxing in the previous stages. The Bulgarian boxer was smaller than Ukraine’s Olena Ivanisova who eliminated a technician Hungarian in the quarter-finals. Zakifova started the bout better, reduced the fighting distance but Ivanisova returned with good jabs in the second. The Bulgarian had to go to the medical corner but she survived the most dangerous moments and has done a superb last round which means she can box for the title with Italy’s Erika Prisciandaro who eliminated the defending champion Ireland’s Daina Moorehouse.
Italy’s reigning EUBC European Women’s Youth Champion Martina La Piana had only one close bout this year during her preparation to Sofia but she arrived to the Bulgarian capital with perfect balance. The Youth Olympic Games winner Italian ruled her semi-final from the first seconds against Poland’s Wiktoria Rogalinska and attacked without any stoppage. La Piana was in different level today than her Polish opponent and remained her chance alive to defend the European title in her next challenge against Ukraine’s surprise Viktoria Fabuliak.
Croatia’s AIBA Women’s Youth World Boxing Championships silver medallist Nikolina Cacic moved down to the bantamweight (54kg) in the recent months to get a title in Sofia. The 18-year-old Croatian delivered her best performance with perfect timing in the semi-finals and did not give any chance to Poland’s Karolina Ampulska. The Croatian controlled all of the three rounds and her effective attacks means Cacic will be boxing for her first European title with Ireland’s Niamh Fay who eliminated Romania’s taller Bianca Cobzaru.
England’s next sensation AIBA Youth World Champion Gemma Richardson is small at the light welterweight (64kg) she has such energetic attacks which makes her favourite in all bouts. The 18-year-old talent had to meet with Finland’s last remaining boxer in Sofia, Eveliina Taimi who is spending her first year among the youth boxers. Richardson was confident in their semi-final and bowed out the Finnish youngster in Sofia where her last challenge for the title will be coming soon against Germany’s No.1 Stefanie Von Berge.
Hungary’s Viktoria Ambrus was quarter-finalist in the last edition in 2018 and she moved forward with her place in the semi-finals. The 18-year-old Hungarian welterweight (69kg) boxer was not enough satisfied with the guaranteed bronze medal and she delivered her best in the semi-finals against Ireland’s Leah Gallen. Ambrus used her height advantage and tried to keep the smaller Irish long in their hectic contest. The Hungarian landed stronger jabs which were the differences between them today therefore Ambrus will be boxing for the title with Italy’s Melissa Gemini.
Bulgaria’s Yasen Radev and Hungary’s Zsolt Zuro has got the same style therefore they produced a sensational fight in the sixth competition day. Both boxers won already medals in EUBC events and spending their first year in the youth level of boxing. Their contest was a real chess game, both were waiting for the best attacking angles. The Hungarian, who moved down to the flyweight (52kg) in the recent weeks, started with a good jab but Radev responded quickly. The Bulgarian was slightly better in their tactical game and advanced to the final of the competition where he will be meeting with France’s Ibrahim Boukedim.
England’s EUBC European Junior Champion Adam Azim was a bit nervous in the first round of his semi-final against Ukraine’s Ihor Kovtun but landed good shots in that period as well. The 17-year-old English lightweight (60kg) boxer received strong advices in the first break from the Best European Men’s Coach of the Year 2018 Mr. Mick Driscoll in the ringside. The English teenager was more patient in the second round and eliminated his Ukrainian rival with smart boxing. Azim will be meeting for the gold medal with Russia’s Usman Magomadov who eliminated Belarus’ last hope Dzmitry Balkou.
The Russian dominancy continued in the male part of the EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships. Vsevolod Shumkov was slightly better than England’s new surprise Adan Mohamed at the bantamweight (56kg). His teammate Ilia Shakirov was too strong for Bulgaria’s Stilyan Hristov at the light welterweight (64kg) in a spectacular bout. Russia’s excellent series was continued by Dmitriy Zakharov who defeated Israel’s Daniel Ilyushonok at the welterweight (69kg).
Statistics after the semi-finals
The following 15 nations have got at least one finalist in the EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships:
- Russia: 11 finalists
- Bulgaria, England, Italy, Ukraine: 4 finalists
- Turkey: 3 finalists
- France, Germany: 2 finalists
- Croatia, Georgia, Hungary, Ireland, Lithuania, Moldova: 1 finalist