Chagaev beats Oquendo in boring fight
By Scott Gilfoid: Former WBA heavyweight title holder Ruslan Chagaev (33-2-1, 20 KO’s) defeated 41-year-old Fres Oquendo (37-8, 24 KO’s) by a 12 round majority decision on Sunday night tow in the vacant WBA heavyweight title at the Akhmat Arena in Grozny, Russia.
The fight was incredibly boring to watch due to the lack of hand speed, power and the general overall sloppy styles of the two fighters. The judges scored the fight 114-114, 115-113 and 115-113 for Chagaev.
Oquendo looked like the better skilled guy by a mile, but he wasn’t fighting hard enough for most of the bout. I mean, he would suddenly throw some beautiful combinations with decent power that would stop Chagaev in his tracks from coming forward. But then Oquendo stop punching and just cover up or fight like he was tired. It was frustrating watching the guy, because you could see the talent there, but he just wasn’t putting into 4th gear and keeping it there.
The southpaw Chagaev came forward the entire fight, throwing slow body shots and throwing a lot of clubbing hooks to the head. Chagaev never was one with an in shape looking physique, but tonight he looked every flabbier than I could remember him looking in the past. It didn’t because Oquendo didn’t have the power or the work rate to take advantage of Chagaev’s slow pace.
Chagaev suffered a cut in the 7th round, but it wasn’t a serious one to where it slowed him down any more than he already was.
David Haye was sitting next to the president of Chechnya during the fight, and you almost had to see this as a sign that we could see Haye fighting Chagaev before long for the WBA strap if Chagaev doesn’t get beaten by someone before then.
In the 12th round, Oquendo fought hard and got the better of Chagaev with some nice shots. However, by that time in the fight he needed a big round for him to win, and he was unable to score any knockdowns.
Like I said, I see Chagaev fighting Haye in the near future if he doesn’t get beaten by someone. As slow as Chagaev looked tonight, I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s beaten even by the bottom dwellers in the top 15 in the WBA’s rankings. Even if Haye’s right arm is only 25% of what it was before his recent shoulder surgery, he’ll likely beat Chagaev with no problems at all. The only thing Haye needs is a top 15 ranking, which he’ll probably get after he beats a lower level heavyweight later this year in September or October when he returns to the ring.
In the co-feature bout, 40-year-old former WBC cruiserweight champion Juan Carlos Gomez (55-3, 40 KOs) defeated Goran Delic (24-1, 4 KO’s) by a 5th round knockout. Delic was slow and easy to hit, and the fight turned out to be a huge mismatch with Gomez nailing him at will. The fight, if you want to call it that, was halted in the 5th round. The official time of the stoppage was 1:32 of the round. With this victory, Gomez captures the vacant WBA International cruiserweight title.