Finland results: Wahlström, Koivula score victories / Räsänen v Mendy ends in draw

Boxing Night Olavinlinna was held on 26th August at the medieval Olavinlinna castle in Savonlinna, Finland.

The event featured fights from WBC super featherweight world champion Eva Wahlström, welterweight contender Jussi Koivula and hard-hitting light heavyweight prospect Niklas Räsänen, among others.

Eva Wahlström’s (21–0–1) and Irma Balijagic Adler’s (16–9) fight was an eight-rounder without Wahlström’s WBC belt on the line. It was Wahlström’s chance to show how she can handle a taller and bigger opponent, and the skillful Finn did a convincing job.

Adler, who has fought many of her fights in lightweight division, simply couldn’t find her way into the fight. Adler tried to utilize her jab, but Wahlström answered by throwing hard rights to the head over the opponent’s left hand. It wasn’t until seventh round until Adler really tried to take the fight to Wahlström, but Wahlström stayed in charge by throwing jabs downstairs and right hands to the head. A clear unanimous decision for the WBC champ.

Niklas Räsänen (14–1–1) and Patrick Mendy (17–3–3) fought an even ten-rounder which ended in a draw – much to Räsänen’s dismay, since he firmly believed he had earned a victory.

Räsänen started the fight convincingly, using the distance well and slipping away from Mendy’s attacks. The Finnish southpaw tried to find an opening for his powerful left cross, but Mendy was a game opponent who managed to get close and throw sneaky hooks from all directions. In the fourth round Räsänen landed good shots, but Mendy started the fifth explosively with a surprise attack right from the bell. Räsänen answered with hard shots of his own, and later in the round he stunned Mendy with his left hand. Mendy answered with a decent uppercut.

Both men remained dangerous to the end. In the ninth Mendy seemed to slow down a little, and Räsänen took the final round with a good right hook and several left hands. One judge scored the fight 97–96 for Räsänen, one 96–95 for Mendy and one had it even 95–95.

Jussi Koivula (22–4–1) had no trouble with Pal Olah (7–9–1). Olah seemed nervous in the opening rounds and Koivula even looked like he was giving his opponent some slack. The fight got dirtier as it progressed, as Olah complained constantly that he was getting hit to the back of the head. The referee on the other hand saw that Olah kept intentionally turning his head to the harm’s way. Olah was finally disqualified in the third round.

Welterweight Oskari Metz (4–0) fought a grueling fight with Temur Abuladze (7–2) from Georgia. The ever-aggressive Metz relied on laying constant pressure on his opponent, but Abuladze handled it well in the early rounds. By the end of the third round Metz’s nose was bleeding. Metz wouldn’t back down, and in the fourth Abuladze started to tire. Metz controlled the action for the rest of the fight, and even though Abuladze got in some nice counters, Metz was awarded with a unanimous decision.

Super bantamweight Jose Antonio Sanchez Romero (7–0–1) clashed with Tornike Tortladze (11–16–1). The short, tough and strong Tortladze marched forward trying to catch his opponent with hard hooks. The skillful Sanchez answered by peppering Tortladze with jabs and one-two-threes.

In the early rounds Sanchez seemed to have trouble handling Tortladze’s power, but later he stopped backpedaling and started to attack. This proved to be a succesful strategy, as Sanchez’s body shots started to wear Tortladze down in the final rounds. In the end Sanchez took the fight by a unanimous decision. Both fighters expressed respect for each other after the final bell.

Tuomo Eronen’s (19–4) and Giorgi Abuladze’s (9–2–1) fight took a strange turn as there was something wrong with Abuladze’s shoes. The Georgian couldn’t throw decent punches because his shoes kept slipping under him. Eronen was first confused by the situation, and as the fight went on, the confusion turned into frustration. Eronen ended the contest with a hard body shot in the beginning of the third round.

Light heavyweight Sami Enbom (16–1) gave Stanislav Eschner (5–4–1) a beating. Eschner was unable to handle Enbom’s power, and from the second round on the fight was getting more and more one-sided. The resilient Eschner wouldn’t go down easily, but in the fourth he took a solid shot to the temple and fell hard on the canvas. He got up, but Enbom finished the job quickly with a barrage of punches. The time of stoppage was 1:16.

Super welterweight Antti Hietala (2–0–1) disposed of Robizoni Omsarashvili (25–18–3) with ease. Omsarashvili went down for the first time in the opening round and when he stood up, he was looking somewhat disheartened. Hietala went right back at him and put Omsarashvili down again with body shots. The final blow came in the second round, as Hietala caught Omsarashvili with a hard right hook to the body. The time of stoppage was 2:16.