The lightweight (60kg) and light middleweight (71kg) boxers fought for the last 16 in the evening session of the 5th competition day at the AIBA World Boxing Championships in Belgrade, Serbia. Such stars as France’s Sofiane Oumiha and Uzbekistan’s Abdumalik Khalokov won their contests with spectacular performances while Kazakhstan’s Aslanbek Shymbergenov eliminated a World Champion.
France’s Sofiane Oumiha won his second contest in Belgrade
France’s Sofiane Oumiha earned a gold medal at the Hamburg 2017 AIBA World Boxing Championships but he could not accomplish the same results at the major competitions in the previous two years. The 27-year-old French is their most experienced boxer who has fantastic technical skills and competes now in his best category, the lightweight (60kg). On Friday, Oumiha met with Viliam Tanko from Slovakia. His rival southpaw made a brave attempt to adopt the rhythm of the French boxer in the first round and he tried to follow that speed. Oumiha used the mistakes of his Slovakian rival to respond with quick counter-attacks and won his second preliminary bout in Belgrade.
“I feel that I became better with every round at this event and I can move every bout one step forward to accomplish my goals. This was a better performance in comparison to the first contest. I met with the Slovakian boxer one time in the past and I have my full respect.”
Sofiane Oumiha (FRA)
Uzbekistan’s Abdumalik Khalokov enjoyed his debut in Belgrade
Uzbekistan’s AIBA Youth World Champion Abdumalik Khalokov is one of the biggest talents not only in his country but in the world who fights at his first AIBA Men’s World Boxing Championships. He moved ahead in the first round against North Macedonia’s Jasin Ljama and worked hard to make a massive advantage after three minutes of the fight. Khalokov changed his style back at the beginning of the second round and worked from a longer distance and used his amazing counter-punches. The Uzbek lightweight (60kg) talent was impressive in all of the three rounds and he enjoyed his debut in Belgrade.
“I think I followed all of the instructions given by my coaches. They wanted me to perform well without any issues as this is my first bout in Belgrade. I did not show all of my potential in this contest and we will continue to improve. The first foght is always tough, you have to feel the ring, the opponent, the atmosphere. The fans expect a lot from me and I feel it. Unfortunately, I am not able to answer them, I am fully focusing to win all of my bouts here and to be a champion.”
Abdumalik Khalokov (UZB)
Serbia’s 19-year-old Semiz Alicic is in the last 16 in the lightweight
Serbia’s new hope in the national team, the 19-year-old Semiz Alicic claimed a gold medal at the 2018 EUBC Junior European Boxing Championship. He joined the elite national squad only this year and after the unsuccessful AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships, he is in excellent shape this year. The Serbian talent landed the clean punch in the first round against Laos’ Walter Sarnoi Oupathana who lives and trains in the United States. Alicic worked through the second round and landed tough punches, therefore, the judges made an obvious decision to pick the winner of the bout. The Serbian teenager has high motivation at this Championships and feel the support of his beloved ones at the Štark Arena.
Finland’s Arslan Khataev advanced to the last 16 once again
Finland arrived to the AIBA World Boxing Championships with three young boxers. Arslan Khataev is the most experienced among them, with seven years of international experiences despite he is just 23. Karre Anttonen’s boxer eliminated Israel’s Bishara Sabbar in his first bout in Belgrade and prepared with a different style of boxing against Mongolia’s young Tulga Oyunbaatar. The lightweight (60kg) is the perfect category for Khataev who has strong Chechen roots but began boxing in Finland. Khataev, who had more than 150 contests already, not only controlled the bout but his punches hurt the Mongolian and the ringside doctor stopped the bout due to Oyunbaatar’s injury.
“It was a tough contest, and I was expecting that it wouldn’t be an easy one. It is always great to win two-in-a-row bouts in such a big event as the AIBA World Boxing Championships. I repeated my Ekaterinburg performance with two victories but I am ready to go further this time. I know my two next possible opponents very well and I have good tactics against both of them.”
Arslan Khataev (FIN).
Kazakhstan’s Aslanbek Shymbergenov defeated AIBA World Champion from Uzbekistan
Kazakhstan’s Aslanbek Shymbergenov won the strong Governor Cup in St. Petersburg this year where he defeated Russia’s AIBA World Champion Andrey Zamkovoy in the final. Following these results, Shymbergenov was in top shape in Belgrade and he had an amazing motivation against Uzbekistan’s Shakhram Giyasov in one of the best contests of the day. The Uzbek became AIBA World Champion in Hamburg four years ago but turned to professional and his speed in today’s contest was not on the same level as in the past. Giyasov returned to the national team but Shymbergenov was faster and smarter in their bout. The Kazakh used his longer hands efficiently and his rate of punches was higher to beat the Uzbek champion.