Friday, November 5, 2021

Signani Successfully Defends European Middleweight Championship Over Diaz In Rome


Forty-two year old European Middleweight champion Matteo Signani scored a workmanlike twelve round unanimous decision over forty-one year old former European Middleweight champion Ruben Diaz on Friday night at the Palazzetto Dello Sport in Rome, Italy. In what was Signani’s second title defense in his second reign of the championship he won for the second time back in October 2019, Signani’s greater activity proved to be the difference in a fight that was fought at a methodical pace. Diaz was able to have moments periodically throughout the twelve round championship bout, but was simply out worked as the fight progressed in a fight that while not necessarily the most entertaining, was a solid performance by two fighters over the age of forty. Official scores were: 117-111, 116-112, and 115-113 all in favor of Signani. Matteo Signani advances to 31-5-3, with 11 Knockouts. Ruben Diaz falls to 26-3-2, with 17 Knockouts.


Also on this card:


A battle for the European Featherweight championship saw champion Mauro Forte and challenger Francesco Grandelli fought to a twelve round split decision draw. An extremely close and competitive fight from the outset saw both fighters attack in short spurts and seemingly match each other punch for punch. This resulted in many of the rounds being very close and neither fighter really being able to stand out from the other. Official scores were 116-113, (Forte) 115-113, (Grandelli) and 114-114 (Even) resulting in the split decision draw.


Jr. Middleweight Tony Dixon scored a scary one punch first round knockout of Francesco Russo. Russo began the fight aggressive and pushed Dixon against the ropes. Dixon however, landed a flush right hand to the top of Russo’s head that sent him down shaking on the canvas. The bout was immediately stopped without a count. Official time of the stoppage was 1:03 of round one. Tony Dixon advances to 12-3, with 4 Knockouts. Francesco Russo falls to 10-2, with 8 Knockouts. Russo was able to get to his feet after a few minutes and did leave the ring under his own power.


Undefeaed Italian Women’s Jr. Featherweight champion Maria Cecchi scored an eight round unanimous decision over “Game” veteran Bec Connolly. Cecchi’s greater polish, accuracy with her offense and consistent success landing left hands throughout led to Cecchi earning the convincing unanimous decision. Official scores were 80-72, (On two scorecards) and 79-73 in favor of Cecchi. Maria Cecchi advances to 6-0, with 1 Knockout. Bec Connolly falls to 3-11, with 0 Knockouts.


Jr. Welterweight Armando Casamonica moved to 4-0 in his career by scoring a hard fought six round majority decision over Mauro Loli. A competitive fight throughout where both fighters had their say, Casamonica’s quicker hands and cleaner offense were ultimately able to earn the nod on two official judges to earn the majority decision victory. Official scores were 57-57, (Even) and 58-56 (On two scorecards in favor of Casamonica. Armando Casamonica advances to 4-0, with 0 Knockouts. Mauro Loli falls to 5-3, with 2 Knockouts.


Undefeated Light-Heavyweight prospect Hrvoje Sep pounded out a convincing six round unanimous decision over former two-time European Light-Heavyweight champion Serhiy Demchenko. From the opening bell, Sep implemented an attack to the body and head of his opponent and had particular success in landing his right hand throughout. Demchenko hung in there for all six rounds, but he simply could not land anything to keep Sep off of him. All three official judges scored the fight 60-54 in favor of Sep.  Hrvoje Sep advances to 11-0, with 8 Knockouts. Serhiy Demchenko falls to 23-16-1, with 15 Knockouts.


Light-Heavyweight Voldy Toutin began the evening by successfully making his professional debut with a six round unanimous decision over Jovan Smilic. Voldy Toutin advances to 1-0, with 0 Knockouts. Jovan Smilic falls to 0-6, with 0 Knockouts.


This card, which was promoted by promoter Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing’s Italian promotional branch in association with Italian promoter Christian Cherchi’s OPI Since 82 provided a look at one fighter who could very well be challenging for a European championship in her near future in Maria Cecchi, one European champion in Matteo Signani, who at age forty-two is still competing at a high level in the sport, and quite possibly a “Knockout of the Year” candidate in Tony Dixon’s one punch knockout of Francesco Russo. While all three fighters are at different stages, as 2022 nears, all three should be in the view of Boxing fans as fighters to watch.


“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”


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