A dominant performance by David “The Great White” Light at a sold-out ABA stadium in Auckland on Saturday evening saw the 26-year-old take home the vacant PBCNZ Cruiserweight title, after defeating Cory Enoka via referee stoppage in the third round.
The 2014 Commonwealth Games silver medallist fighting in only his fourth professional bout, set the tone of the fight early in the first round, sending the 36-year-old Enoka to the canvas with just 45 seconds on the clock after landing a series of unanswered punches.
A game Enoka, shrugged off the knockdown and immediately set about trying to unload his own combinations. Enoka, the New Zealand Super Heavyweight National Amateur Champion in 2015 displayed his heart and grit, continuing to push forward and throw shots even though he was continually coming off second best in his encounters with Light.
Light capped off the first round in style, putting Enoka down a second time right on the 10-second clapper mark.
The second round saw Light establish his lead further, keeping on the pressure, he sent Enoka to the canvas again at the half-way mark of the round. By this point the gulf in skill between the two was apparent and it became more a matter of when and not if Light would win. Enoka to his credit, refused to be cowed and even as Light’s body shots began to take their toll the 36-year-old kept looking for an opening he could use to force his way back into the fight.
However, after a fourth knock down the referee waved the fight off 49 seconds into the third round.
“I was just trying to relax, I was just trying to put it on him and he tried to rush me and I got him with a good shot that dropped him,” Light said in a post-fight interview with Gladrap Channel.
“Once I saw I could put him away, I put him away. You know whenever that opportunity presents itself, you’re going to take it.”
Andrei Mikhailovich Credit Nick Depree
The co-main event of the night saw the debut of Andrei “The Renegade” Mikhailovich up against 38-year-old Robert Ramsey.
The 20-year-old, exuding confidence as he made his way to the ring backed by a supportive crowd went straight to work as soon as the opening bell rang, unloading powerful body shots to the ribs of Ramsey with a controlled intensity.
Ramsey, a fighter who up until Saturday had gone the distance with all four of his opponents was having difficulty landing clean shots on Mikhailovich, who was moving around the ring with the demeanour of a Spanish matador.
Two minutes into the second round a strong left jab staggered Ramsey; Mikhailovich seeing his moment pounced, throwing a series of combinations which knocked Ramsey down. He survived the rest of the round but retired in the third to give Mikhailovich his first professional victory.
In his post-fight interview Light, who trains with Mikhailovich at Peach Boxing gave praise to his younger stablemate.
“He’s just a different kind of guy and he could be something really special and I’m really excited about his career.”
A comment that could easily apply to Light as well. The fact that both fighters emerged unscathed from their bouts will hopefully mean we see their return to the ring in the near future.
For those wanting to watch the fights they can visit Gladrap’s YouTube Channel