The boxing scene in Oz

By Anthony Cocks

Aussie boxing news
Aussie boxing news



WBO number six ranked junior welterweight Liam ‘The Prodigy’ Paro 15-0 (11) was impressive on Saturday night when he comprehensively out-boxed and then stopped rugged German Robert Tlatlik 22-2 (16) in seven rounds at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre on an Ace Boxing promotion.


Headlining the live Fox Sports broadcast, the 22-year-old Paro was extended beyond five rounds for the first time in his pro career.


The teak-tough Tlatlik never stopped coming forward and gave Paro some much-needed rounds after his previous two 10-round bouts against Andrew Wallace and Sebastian Bytyqi ended in the third and second rounds respectively.  


The southpaw sniper picked off the hard-charging visitor with a variety of left hand shots behind a clever right jab, breaking his will over seven increasingly one-sided rounds to claim the vacant WBO Asia Pacific 140-pound title. Tlatlik and his corner decided he had had enough with three rounds left to go.


Paro won every round of the contest. It was Tlatlik’s first loss by stoppage.


“My plan is to fight for a world title in 12 to 18 months and I’m right on track,” said the WBO Youth champion after the fight.


“Tonight was the toughest fight of my career but I came through it well and I believe that when the time comes I can win the world title too.


“I have terrific support from my family and fans and they are the people I’m fighting for.’’


Paro is now on his way to Marseille, France to support his teammate Mark ‘Bam Bam’ Flanagan 24-5 (17) as he challenges Armenian-born Frenchman Arsen Goulamirian 23-0 (15) for the interim WBA cruiserweight title on Saturday night. He will then head to Panama to attend the WBO convention and make his case for a boost in the world rankings.


Meanwhile undefeated Australian heavyweight champion Demsey ‘The Tower of Terror’ McKean 12-0 (6) has called out Lucas Browne 26-1 (23) after defeating Victor Oganov 32-6 (30) on the undercard in his first bout in a year.  


The 28-year-old Ipswich southpaw, who was having his first fight back after ligament replacement surgery on his knuckles, claimed the national crown in Melbourne last October with a sixth round TKO of hard-hitting champion Willie ‘Wild Bill’ Nasio 11-3 (10).  


McKean is planning to defend his Australian title in Southport in six weeks’ time and wants a crack at former WBA ‘regular’ titleholder Browne after that.


“After I win that one I definitely want to fight Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne as well,” said the 6-foot-6 McKean. “I’ve been trying to tee up a fight with him. I’m back to my winning ways and I see he’s fighting an average opponent next.


“We’re both struggling to get opponents, I reckon we both get it on to see who truly is the best heavyweight in Australia at the moment.”


Browne, 39, is scheduled to take on limited journeyman Junior Pati 12-22-1 (6) in a stay busy fight in New Zealand next month.




Bantamweight contender Jason ‘The Smooth One’ Moloney 17-0 (14) has settled in at Orlando, Florida ahead of his world title shot against IBF bantamweight champion Emmanuel Rodriguez 18-0 (12) in the quarterfinals of the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS).


Moloney has been impressed by the marketing behind the promotion with posters and billboards all over town pushing the fight at the CFE Arena this Saturday night.


But the 27-year-old Melbourne-born, Kingscliff-based boxer insists he isn’t there for a holiday. 


“Being on the other side of the world and seeing myself on billboards and on posters up around Orlando is a pretty amazing feeling,” said Moloney in an exclusive interview with Maxboxing.


“I’m trying to let myself enjoy these little moments because it has taken a lot of hard work and sacrifices to get here, but I’m not just here to be on a billboard. I’m here to win this world title and nothing will beat that feeling!”


The Rodriguez-Moloney fight will be the third bout in the quarterfinals of the WBSS bantamweight tournament after WBO titleholder Zolani Tete outpointed Mikhail Aloyan in Russia on Saturday night and Japanese wrecking ball Naoya Inoue destroyed the capable Juan Carlos Payano in the opening round to defend his WBA ‘regular’ title in Japan on October 7.


If Moloney succeeds in getting past Rodriguez, he will face the dangerous Inoue 17-0 (15) in the semifinals.


“Yes, I watched Inoue vs Payano and obviously Inoue caught him with a great shot early. That can happen, it’s boxing,” said Moloney.


“[But] right now my whole focus and the only thing I am thinking about is beating Emmanuel Rodriguez.”


Victory will see Moloney join Jeff Fenech, Lionel Rose and Jimmy Carruthers as Aussie world bantamweight champions.


The fight will be broadcast live and free in Australia on Foxtel’s Main Event channel 521 from 11am.




Townsville bruiser Mark ‘Bam Bam’ Flanagan 24-5 (17) gets the chance to re-establish himself in the red-hot cruiserweight division when he takes on undefeated Armenian-born French contender Arsen Goulamirian 23-0 (15) for the interim WBA 200-pound title in Marseille, France this Saturday night.


The 28-year-old came up short in his previous world title challenge against WBA ‘super’ champion Denis Lebedev, losing a wide points decision against the Russian veteran in July last year.


“The preparation for this fight is much better this time than when I challenged Dennis Lebdev for the world title,” Flanagan told Paul Nasari on the radio program Boxing Chat on 2BACR in Sydney recently.


“I’m confident I will be victorious and become the WBA [interim] cruiserweight champion on October 20 in France.”


Flanagan has been preparing himself for this fight in legendary fight town Philadelphia, where he has been impressed by the business-like attitude of the boxers in the gym.


“My preparation has been good in Philadelphia,” said Flanagan, the WBA number 10 contender. “Everything is looking on track. I’ve got some good sparring partners. We’ve got Steve Cunningham, former world champion, helping us.


“I’ve got a good mixture of sparring partners. All the fighters here are hungry. When you walk in the gym they all have that grimace look on their face. It’s all about training hard and work, work, work.”


Goulamirian trains for his fights in Big Bear, California under the watchful eye of coach Abel Sanchez, best known as the trainer of former middleweight kingpin Gennady Golovkin.


“He’s just so determined, it’s going to be hard to hold him back,” said Sanchez. “It’s going to be very important for a referee to keep close tabs on the opponents that Arsen fights because somebody can get hurt.”


The WBA currently recognises no less than four world champions in the 200-pound weight class.


Oleksandr Usyk unified the division in season one of the World Boxing Super Series and retains the WBA ‘super’ title, while the Panama City sanctioning body lists Beibut Shumenov as the WBA ‘regular’ champion. Lebedev remains the ‘champion in recess’ despite being active.


The 31-year-old Goulamirian picked up the spurious title with an impressive 11th round TKO of previously undefeated Belgium power-puncher Ryad Merhy 25-1 (21) in March.

Aussie boxing news
Aussie boxing news



WBO number one junior middleweight contender Dennis ‘Hurricane’ Hogan 27-1-1 (7) isn’t one to rest on his laurels.


The 33-year-old Brisbane-based Irishman has signed on to face IBF number 15 Jamie Weetch 12-2 (5) at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre on December 15 in the headline fight on another strong DDP Sports card while waiting for his shot at WBO champion Jaime Munguia 31-0 (26).


“I really wanted to stay active. I’ve been training really hard all year so I just wanted to stay active and get a fight in and really blow this guy away. That’s what we want to do,” said Hogan in an exclusive interview with Maxboxing.


“It worked out really well that we got this fight.”


Hogan was hoping to land a world title shot against undefeated Mexican hotshot Munguia on the Gennady Golovkin versus Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez undercard, but the 22-year-old champion opted to face little-known Brandon Cook of Canada instead. Highly-ranked by the WBO but largely untested, Cook put up little resistance before folding in the third.


“I don’t even care to be honest, but it should’ve been me on there,” said Hogan. “To bypass me when I had my hand up is a cop-out. I mean Brandon Cook getting that shot, it just didn’t make any sense to me. I was confused when I looked at it and seen him being blown out of the water in what was it, the third round?


“It was just an overmatched fight, something silly on such a great, great undercard. Such a classic fight with Alvarez and GGG, they should’ve had the champion versus the number one, but they opted out to take the easy route and blasted a guy out for absolutely no gain really except for a purse.”


The Glenn Rushton-trained fighter is already putting in quality round with former WBO welterweight champion Jeff Horn, who will be facing Anthony Mundine in a big domestic clash at 156.5-pounds at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium on November 30.


If Hogan gets past Weetch as he expects, it will likely land him a berth in the IBF 154-pound rankings where unbeaten American Jarrett Hurd 22-0 (15) in the boss.


Hogan says he doesn’t care which world titleholder he faces first.


“Look, I’ll fight both of them on the same night,” he laughs. “But I suppose Jamie Munguia. We’ve done everything right by the WBO, we’ve done everything we could to get to where we are. That’s the fight I would like first and foremost.


“It’s like when Jeff [Horn] beat Manny Pacquiao and seeing what it’s like to beat a great champion. I see Munguia is getting that credit at the moment and to get in there and make a statement and beat a champion like that, that’s what propels me on.


“My goal it to be the unified, undisputed champion of the world, so after beating Munguia I’d go straight for Jarrett Hurd anyway. There’s no messing around for me, this is what I want to do. I’m all in for unifying the titles.


“Some people will think I’m crazy, but I’m just following a dream.”


It is not lost on Hogan that the last time Weetch faced another boxer named Hogan – West Australian Sam Hogan five years ago in his pro debut – he lost on points over four rounds.


“It’s good actually. Weetchy will have known in the back of his mind that a Hogan beat him. As that plays in the back of his head he’s creating the affirmation ‘Hogan’s beat me, Hogan’s beat me’,” said Hogan.


“I’ll be driving through Jamie Weetch. I’ve spoken to Glenn [Rushton] already and we’re knocking Jamie Weetch out.


“He’s hitting the canvas and not getting back up again. Relentless pressure, moving in to expose a lot of Jamie’s weaknesses. We will be getting Jamie Weetch out of there. This fight is not going the distance.


“There will be no Hogan’s Heroes for Jamie Weetch!”




WBA number 15 ranked light heavyweight ‘President’ Reagan Dessaix 15-1 (10) takes on the toughest test of his short career when he faces Steve Lovett 17-2 (13) over 10 rounds at Seagulls Rugby League Club in Tweed Heads, NSW on November 10.


“Massive respect to Steve and what his done in his career, but this is my time and I’ll be doing whatever it takes to make sure that WBA [Oceania] strap is coming back home with me,” wrote Dessaix, 22, on social media.


Lovett has fought the bulk of his career out of the United States where he compiled a record of 8-2 with 1-NC with none of his American fights lasting the distance.


The 33-year-old from Canberra returned to Australia a year ago after suffering back-to-back knockout losses to Craig Baker and Lionell Thompson.



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