World Series of Boxing (WSB) Season IV champions Cuba Domadores continued their dominance in the fifth installment of the competition with a 5-0 home win over Ukraine Otamans.
This was Cuba’s 14th straight win in Season V, but sadly for Ukraine the result moved them down to fourth in the Group A table, and outside of the qualification places for the knock-out stages.
The most important bout from an individual level came at Light heavyweight (81 kg) where two-time AIBA World Championships gold medalist Julio Cesar La Cruz temporarily moved to the top of the rankings after winning every round against 4-2 Oleksandr Khyzhniak.
La Cruz’s six win of the season was a vital one, especially as the number two and three ranked Valentino Mandredonia and Hrvoje Sep fight each other on Saturday night.
It was a classic La Cruz performance who outclassed his Ukrainian rival despite there only being one place between them in the rankings at the start of the match.
This means that the Cuban is now guaranteed to finish in the top two rankings, and as only two Rio 2016 Olympic Games quotas are available through WSB, his victory was incredibly significant.
Number one ranked Flyweight (52 kg) Yosbany Veitia had already earned his Rio quota before this fixture, but still moved to 7-0 in the opening contest of the evening when he defeated 3-3 Azat Usenaliev.
Veitia is perhaps the most complete fighter in WSB, and expertly showcased his wide range of punches, endless stamina and tight defence against Usenaliev who tried hard, but could not keep up with his opponent.
Lazaro Alvarez is another Cuban who has earned a Rio 2016 quota, and the Domadore finished the group stages number one in the Lightweight (60 kg) rankings with an entertaining win over Viktor Slavinskyi.
London 2012 Olympic gold medalist Roniel Iglesias Sotolongo secured Cuba’s overall win at Welterweight (69 kg) when he dominated Oleg Zubenko.
Sotolongo’s punches are always precise despite the high volume of them, and though Zubenko showed his toughness throughout, it was an impossible job against the Cuban machine.
6-1 Super heavyweight (91+ kg) Lenier Eunice Pero needed a stoppage or unanimous decision success over Ukraine’s Ihor Shevadzutskyi to temporarily move up to first in the rankings, but could only manage a split decision win against his tough opponent.
This was a very tight contest which was won by Pero on two scorecards by a single point, while Shevadzutskyi was awarded the fight by the third judge by the same amount.
Taken from www.worldseriesboxing.com