The Dutch team made a clean sweep in the first day at the Cologne Boxing World Cup18 December 2020
Following the General weigh-in, the Official Draw and the Press Conference, the Cologne Boxing World Cup began with its first competition day. The Dutch team made a clean sweep in the first day, all of their four boxers as Enrico La Cruz, Delano James, Max Van der Pas and Artjom Kasparian won their contests in Cologne.
The opening day of the Cologne Boxing World Cup saw 26 contests which were divided into two sessions. Altogether 72 boxers including 21 women are attending in the new edition of the Cologne Boxing World Cup in Germany.
The safety of all participants, the continuous medical checks, the social distancing, the hygienic preparations, wearing masks and all of the health controls are the responsibility of the local organizers in Germany to avoid any new Covid-19 cases during the Cologne Boxing World Cup. The Technical Delegate of the competition Mr. Marko Marovic of Croatia and the Covid-19 manager are controlling all of the aspects of the competition.
The German Boxing Federation was planning to host the event earlier this year and re-scheduled it two-times in the recent months. The following nations are attending in the Cologne Boxing World Cup: Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, France, Germany, India, Moldova, Netherlands, Poland and Ukraine.
The bout of the day
France’s Billal Bennama has qualified for the Tokyo Olympic Games through the European Olympic Boxing Qualifying Event and he had to meet with his top rival in Cologne first, India’s Amit Panghal. Bennama claimed bronze medal at the Yekaterinburg 2019 AIBA World Boxing Championships but in that event the Indian achieved silver. Both boxers were waiting for their opponent’s faults therefore their world class battle looked like a chess game in the first round. The taller Bennama kept the distance better in the first round and moved forward more in the second. Panghal’s left-handed punches reached Bennama several times in the bout and the Indian worked well to beat his top French opponent in the bout of the day between the Tokyo Olympians.
The surprise of the day
Denmark’s Yvonne Baek Rasmussen is one of the most experienced European women boxers who claimed medals in several events already in 2005. The Danish veteran returned to the event after a few months of break and used her aggressive style to beat Germany’s young talent Leonie Mueller who used her footwork well enough in the bout. The Danish southpaw moved ahead without any stoppage but the 18-year-younger German used her speed to beat Rasmussen in the first day of boxing in Cologne.
Team of the day
The Dutch team arrived to the Cologne Boxing World Cup with four boxers and all of them were in action in the first day of boxing. European Games bronze medallist Enrico La Cruz defeated Germany’s Assan Hansen first at the lightweight (63kg). His teammate Max Van der Pas used up his Indian opponent’s, Ashish Kumar’s faults and defeated a Tokyo Olympian rival at the middleweight (75kg). Netherlands’s Delano James and Artjom Kasparian were too experienced for their opponents in the first day of boxing making a perfect day for the country.
Ukraine’s Tetiana Kob qualified for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and she opened her campaign in the Cologne Boxing World Cup against her teammate, Svetlana Vasylevska at the flyweight (51kg). The 33-year-old Kob, who is member of the national team since 2008, moved more on feet from the first seconds and found the best attacking angles. Vasylevska was not enough confident in their bout and Kob was too experienced for her in the opening bout of the event.
France’s Wilfried Florentin won the title of the heavyweight (91kg) in the 2019 EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships and the 19-year-old talent was quickly involved to the national team. The French teenager had to meet with Germany’s Athanasios Kazakis who moved up to the weight category only this year. The 24-year-old German had longer reach but he approved the fighting style of the bout in the first round. Florentin was better in the in-fighting game and landed strong uppercuts while the referee counted his German opponent therefore the French won their contest in Cologne.
Croatia’s Gabrijel Veocic impressed as a junior and youth boxer in the recent years and joined to the elite competitions on January 2020. The 19-year-old Croatian amazed in the Zagreb Grand Prix and continued his strong performance in the Cologne Boxing World Cup. Veocic was too experienced for Germany’s Serhat Parlak and his game strategy dominated the first and second rounds. The Croatian, who claimed bronze at the Sofia 2019 EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships, proved he is one of Europe’s top future hopes at the middleweight (75kg).
Germany’s Deniel Krotter attended high number of junior and youth competitions during his career and he moved ahead in the national rankings step by step. The German hope competes at the welterweight (69kg) currently and opened his campaign against Poland’s Lukasz Zygula. Krotter felt the tempo well and overcame his brave Polish opponent in the attacks with nice punches. The German boxer had the tactical and technical advantage therefore he secured his place in the last four.
Germany’s Ibragim Bazuev was quarter-finalist at the Hamburg 2017 AIBA World Boxing Championships and returned to the national team in good shape this year. The 26-year-old light heavyweight (81kg) boxer was supported by experienced coach Mr. Valentin Silaghi in the ringside and followed the strategy from the first seconds against Poland’s Piotr Szczukowski. Bazuev controlled all of the exchanges in each of the round and won their contest by unanimous decision.
Germany’s Nelvie Raman Tiafack and Croatia’s Marko Milun both claimed bronze medals in the Minsk 2019 European Games. The two super heavyweight (+91kg) boxers had to meet each other already in the first day of boxing in Cologne. The younger 21-year-old German was not enough shape in the opening round of the battle but he stepped into the gas from the second and he eliminated the Croatian boxer in his home city.