British-based Russian welterweight, David Avanesyan, looks destined for massive fights in the future after stopping hard-hitting Venezuelan, Charlie Navarro, to win the interim WBA world title in Monaco at the weekend.
The 27-year old, trained by Carl Greaves in Newark, stopped Navarro courtesy of a left hook to the body in the ninth round of their contest at the Salles des Etoiles in Monte Carlo on Saturday and now looks ready for potential blockbuster showdowns with some of the biggest names in the division, and the sport, next year.
Avenesyan won most of the early rounds, patiently countering most of Navarro’s work and punishing the South American with some calculated and spiteful shots to the body. By the fifth, Navarro was well behind on points and the former world title challenger (lost unanimous decision to Vyacheslav Senchenko in 2010) came out all guns blazing as he looked for the stoppage. Avanesyan did well to weather the storm here but Navarro’s approach became increasingly clumsy, and a low blow halfway through the round saw him deducted a point by referee Stanley Christodoulou.
The Venezuelan got more desperate as the fight progressed but he was picked off with ease by the Russian and was stopped in the ninth after Avaneyan cleverly pinned his man on the ropes, touched his head with a probing left hook to raise the guard and then threw all he had into a thunderous body shot that sent Navarro to the canvas. He was counted out without recovering. The watching Ricky Hatton would have approved.
After the contest, Avanesyan, watched by a number of his fellow countrymen and cheered at ringside by stablemates, Robbie Davies jnr. and Adam Little, said: “I am happy with the victory, very happy. Navarro was a tough opponent who came to win but I boxed well after a good training camp and was better on the night. My life in England is going well. I enjoy the training and am learning more [with Carl Greaves] everyday – including my English. I am hoping I can now defend the title with bigger fights in the future.”
The grateful Russian added: “I would like to thank the WBA for the opportunity, my manager Neil [Marsh], who has delivered everything he promised, and my coach Carl [Greaves] who really pushed me into the best shape of my life. My strength coach, physio and sparring partners also all helped me gain this great victory. I am very proud.”
Greaves said: “I’m so proud of David. He is a model professional and I couldn’t ask any more from a fighter. Any coach will tell you that when the shots you are working on in camp come off in the fight itself then you are really pleased and we worked on shots to the body throughout training, even in sparring where we faced such great fighters as Carson Jones and Kell Brook. It’s very satisfying to see the shots we wanted to throw executed so perfectly by David. “
The Newark-based trainer added: “The Monte Carlo experience was amazing. I believe David has a couple of levels to come and, together with Neil who sorted everything out for us while we were over here, we are looking forward to even bigger fights in future.“
Manager Neil Marsh said: “David and Carl are a pleasure to work with. I’m so proud of them both. David is a fantastic fighter and, with Carl training him – he got him in tremendous shape for this fight – I have no doubt David can become a world champion and I will do everything in my power to make that happen.”
Thanking the WBA and promoter, Rodney Berman, Marsh added that Avanesyan will enjoy Christmas in the UK before defending the interim belt in early 2016 with bigger fights to come. The win moves the Russian into the no.1 position with the WBA where unbeaten American, Keith Thurman reigns as champion.