England’s Gemma Richardson won the battle of the stars in the semi-finals of the EUBC U22 European Boxing Championships

The sixth competition day was held at the EUBC U22 European Boxing Championships in Roseto degli Abruzzi, Italy where the event continued with 40 semi-finals. England’s Gemma Richardson has done a fantastic job against one of the stars of the event, Russia’s Nune Asatrian and won the bout of the semi-finals.

All of the 10 women and 10 men weight categories were in action in the sixth competition day. The winners of today’s contests advanced to the finals in the EUBC U22 European Boxing Championships.

The total number of U22 boxers is 285 in the first European continental event of the year including 92 young ladies. The Technical Delegate of the EUBC U22 European Boxing Championships is Mr. Maxim Cherticovtsev of Moldova.

Albania, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and Wales sent their boxers to the event.

The bout of the day

Russia’s Nune Asatrian claimed silver medals in all of the major youth championships and only England’s Caroline Dubois was able to stop her. She claimed the gold medal at the 2020 Russian Women’s Elite National Championships at the age of 19 and arrived to Roseto as a gold medal contender. Asatrian met with another English talent, Gemma Richardson who claimed three titles in big youth championships. Richardson moved down to the lightweight (60kg) and she is still small in that category as well but her attacking style is uncomfortable for her opponents. The 20-year-old English talent was slightly better in the exchanges and her narrow success means that she can box for the title against Ukraine’s Amina Abramova.

The surprises of the day

Netherlands’ Mustafa Akraa is a newcomer in their national team who competed only smaller international tournaments before the start of the EUBC U22 European Boxing Championships. The Dutch lightweight (60kg) boxer exceeded all of the expectations with his amazing successes in Roseto degli Abruzzi. Akraa was smarter than Georgia’s seed No.1 Artyush Gomtsyan in the first round and he amazed with his effectiveness. Akraa defeated several favourites and continued his winning path in the competition advancing to the final as the lone Dutch boxer.

Azerbaijan’s Ruslan Rustamov was gold medallist at the 2015 EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships in Kolobrzeg and he is still in the U22 age group. The Azeri boxer moved up from the light flyweight (49kg) up to the light welterweight (64kg) in the recent six years. Rustamov had the height advantage against Israel’s Ahmad Shtiwi but he did not use it well enough in the first round. The smaller Israeli boxer is also experienced but he delivered one of his best ever performances and defeated the Azeri favourite. Shtiwi will be boxing for the gold medal with Ireland’s Dean Patrick Clancy who eliminated Italy’s Matteo Ara in the second semi-final.

The Round-Up

Finland’s Vilma Viitanen robbed into the world of boxing when she claimed silver medal at the 2017 EUBC European Junior Boxing Championships. The 20-year-old boxer moved back to the featherweight (57kg) and tried to use her smart style of boxing in the semi-final against Russia’s Valeria Devyataykina. Viitanen had clear boxing in their contest and she was able to keep the tough rhythm until the final gong. The final verdict was split decision in the favour of the younger Finnish boxer who can compete for the title of the category against Italy’s Sirine Charaabi.

Germany’s Stefanie Von Berge and Hungary’s Luca Hamori knew each other well enough from previous junior and youth competitions. Both boxers were born in 2001 and after a short trial at the welterweight (69kg), the young talents moved back to the light welterweight (64kg). The German boxer was taller than Hamori and used her distance well in the first round which was enough for her to lead on the scorecards. Von Berge used also her strength in the second round and the Hungarian ringside abandoned their fight after six minutes. The 20-year-old German talent will be meeting for the title of the category with Russia’s Natalia Sychugova who bowed out Slovakia’s Miroslava Jedinakova.

Ukraine’s Maria Lovchinska claimed the gold medal at the 2018 EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships and returned to Roseto degli Abruzzi after three years. The Ukrainian heavyweight (+81kg) boxer upgraded her skills in the recent period and she controlled the first round against Moldova’s Daria Kozorez who won the title of the category in the last 2020 EUBC European Youth Boxing Championships. The younger Moldovan is newcomer in the U22 events and Lovchynska had the speed and strength to beat her in Roseto.

Ukraine’s AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships bronze medallist Maksym Molodan had a tough job in the first round against Italy’s Gianluigi Malanga. The Ukrainian welterweight (69kg) boxer could not maintain the best fighting distance against the Italian and he felt himself uncomfortable in the second round. Malanga, who competed in the last edition of the AIBA World Boxing Championships, was a hard target for the younger Ukrainian in the second round. Molodan did not give up the fight and his efforts were enough to turn back their semi-final which means Russia’s Ivan Stupin will be his last opponent.

France’s Moreno Fendero competed in several international events in the previous five years and used his strength in the first round to reduce the fighting distance against Russia’s Nikita Voronov who won the Belgrade Winner Tournament in April. The Russian middleweight (75kg) boxer had a simple tactic against the smaller French, he tried to keep him long with his longer hands. Fendero was too static in the third round and the 23-year-old Russian controlled that last period in Roseto. Voronov advanced to the final and will be facing for the gold medal with Germany’s Kevin Boakye-Schumann.

Georgia’s strong Artyom Yordanyan eliminated France’s EUBC European Youth Champion favourite Wilfried Florentin in the quarter-finals and he dominated the first round of the semi-final against Ireland’s Jack Michael Marley. The Georgian heavyweight (91kg) boxer caught his Irish opponent in the first round and the referee had to count Marley. Yordanyan controlled also the second round while Marley had good stamina in the third but the Georgian had strong advantage and kept the triumph of their semi-final. Yordanyan will be meeting for the gold medal with Russia’s AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships silver medallist Vladimir Uzunyan. His teammate Nikoloz Begadze also advanced to the final of the event at the super heavyweight (+91kg).

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