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Developments in Kickboxing's 85kg Division Over the Weekend

This past weekend was packed with fights around the globe. In particular, there were some telling developments in the 85kg division, a division that the verdict is still out there on. One can get the gist of who the top few guys in the division are, but beyond that the field is wide open. The results that transpired this past weekend make the picture a bit clearer, at least.

The biggest fight in the division this past weekend was Sahak Parparyan vs. Cesar Cordoba at Enfusion Live in Barcelona on Saturday. Sahak is recognized as one of the top 85kg fighters in kickboxing, along with Franci Grajs and Andrew Tate, who have all fought each other. Going into the fight, I knew that it would be competitive and that Cordoba is a very good fighter. There was a bit of a question mark on Cordoba though, seeing as he only fights at home as of late and hasn't fought top competition in a while. Despite the fight ending in a draw, Cordoba proved that he's up there with the top 85kg fighters, as he took the first two rounds from Sahak by just being too slick and technical. Basically, add another name to the picture.

Also on the card was an 85kg fight between It's Showtime veteran Moises Ruibal and young Slovenian, Tadej Toplak. Going in, I thought Toplak had a lot of potential and despite getting stopped, I still think it's there. Ruibal continues to hang around, though I wouldn't put him close to the likes of Sahak, Grajs, Cordoba and Tate. Toplak hurt Ruibal at first but then got overaggressive and ran into a couple of huge punches, getting dropped. Toplak rematches Ivan Stanic next month at Enfusion Live in Slovenia. He did get stopped by Ruibal, but he definitely looked like he had recovered a fair bit.

Another event with multiple match-ups with 85kg division implications was Monte Carlo Fighting Masters in Monaco. The event saw a number of fights around that weight, notably Halim Chibani vs. Suleiman Magomedov and Yassine Ahaggan vs. Horace "Boy Boy" Martin. Chibani vs. Magomedov was a fight between two guys who could in my opinion compete with the best in the division. Magomedov had an impressive resume coming in but video was scarce, so evaluating him was difficult. From an eight minute highlight of the fight, Magomedov, who won via decision, looked pretty good. He's tall and skilled for the division and looks like he can compete with the top guys. Chibani would probably do better against an opponent with a different style, one who's more head on like Yassine Ahaggan, who he stopped last year.

Speaking of Yassine Ahaggan, he's another young fighter out of France with a lot of promise. I thought he'd definitely beat Horace Martin going in, and he was winning until getting stopped. For me, this was the best I've seen Martin look. He didn't fight wild and he was calm and calculated throughout, taking his time to find holes in Ahaggan's defense before exploiting them with big power punches and knees. It was an eye opening performance that showcased a lot of intangibles I didn't know Martin had. Ahaggan is still a good fighter and has a future in my opinion, but just seems to get a bit wild at times.

Finally, Andrew Tate was also in action in France, where he avenged a 2011 loss to Vincent Petitjean. The fight was in full contact but both fighters are good and also fight what we group into kickboxing or K-1 rules. Tate is obviously one of the top fighters in the 85kg division already and is on pace to have a big 2013 with three other Enfusion fights lined up already in the coming months. Petitjean is a fighter who I'd like to see more of, as he has a different skillset than most fighters, like Tate, and has beaten Tate once. Petitjean drew with Francis Javier Jorge, who is another capable fighter, last month.

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Weekend Results From France: Tate Avenges Loss, Ozkul Gets DQ Win

This weekend there were a lot of fights in France in both kickboxing and Muay Thai, as the month of March really begins to heat up.

Power Trophy 2013

One of kickboxing's top 85kg fighters, Andrew Tate fought a rematch against Vincent Petitjean in full contact rules for the ISKA title. Tate and Petitjean fought back in November of 2011 with Petitjean getting a decision win. This time they fought twelve rounds of two minutes and Tate picked up a majority decision win to avenge the loss from 2011.

Hichem Medoukali def. Camille Gentelet by decision.
Aleksandr Gordey def. Nicolas Atmani by TKO in Round 2.
Mathieu Boris def. Uranbeck Esenkulov by KO in Round 2.

Le Choc Des Legendes

Le Choc des Legendes held their annual show in France, and as usual Yetkin Ozkul was on the card taking on one of the top featherweight Muay Thai fighters in Thailand, Pokaew Fonjaengchonburi. Ozkul dropped the much smaller Pokaew in the first round but it just seemed to annoy Pokaew, who started to come on strong after. After the second round, Pokaew apparently kept going after the bell and cut Ozkul with a knee to the face, resulting in a disqualification and Ozkul getting the win.

Armin Pumphanmuang def. Sekou Dembele by TKO in Round 2.
Thepsuthin Pumphanmuang def. Guimba Coulibaly by decision.
Gregory Choplin def. Gil Silva by decision.
Ibrahim CHiahou def. Herbert Womaleu by decision.

Grand Soiree de la Boxe

Raphael Llodra def. Jakub Gadzik by KO in Round 1.



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Enfusion Live Barcelona Results: Parparyan and Cordoba Draw, Roqueni Beats Kyshenko

Enfusion Live held their second event of the year today in Barcelona, Spain. The card featured a few top match-ups, with the likes of Artur Kyshenko vs. Abraham Roqueni and Cesar Cordoba vs. Sahak Parparyan.

In the main event, Sahak Parparyan and Cesar Cordoba met at 85kg in a battle of two of the division's best fighters. Cordoba took the first two rounds, where he was just too slick and technical for Sahak. To Sahak's credit, he fought much better than he did in his last fight. In the third round it was looking like more of the same before Sahak dropped Cordoba with a right hand over the top while breaking from the inside. That was enough to get Sahak a 10-8 third round and as a result, the fight was scored a draw. Strangely enough, there was no extra round.

Right before the main event was a big 70kg match-up between Artur Kyshenko and Abraham Roqueni. Roqueni started the fight well, moving in, landing shots and getting out in the first round. Kyshenko started to really come on in the second round and was definitely landing the harder, more damaging shots. The third round was more like the second. Roqueni, despite hanging with Kyshenko, just seemed the much more wearier of the two fighters with Kyshenko having all the physical advantages. It looked like a competitive but clear win for Kyshenko. However, Spanish judging struck again and Roqueni was awarded a split decision. Then again, Kyshenko missed weight by 2.5kg.

Update: On second watch, Kyshenko vs. Roqueni is actually a close fight but I don't think Roqueni won. I think an extra round would've been fair to him but it's hard to make a case for him winning two rounds. Kyshenko won the third but the second was closer.

85kg: Sahak Parparyan and Cesar Cordoba draw.

70kg: Abraham Roqueni def. Artur Kyshenko by split decision.

56kg: Iman Barlow def. Maribel Sousa by unanimous decision.

85kg: Moises Ruibal def. Tadej Toplak by KO in Round 1.

70kg: David Calvo def. Mirko Vorkapic by TKO (Cut).

63kg: Nico Barbera def. Ruben Almeida by decision.

 

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