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Finals for 18 nations at the 2022 IBA Women’s World Boxing Championships

The semi-finals finished with the 12 bouts of the evening session at the IBA Women’s World Boxing Championships in Istanbul. The winners in the light flyweight (50kg), bantamweight (54kg), lightweight (60kg), welterweight (66kg), middleweight (75kg) and heavyweight (+81kg) advanced to the finals.

Turkey became the most successful nation with five finalists at these Championships including their stars Busenaz Cakiroglu and Busenaz Surmeneli. Ireland, Algeria, Chinese Taipei, India, Italy, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Mozambique, Poland, Thailand and Turkey had finalists after the first session of the semi-finals. Canada, Brazil, Colombia, Morocco, Panama, Romania and the USA joined them this evening.

Valencia and Cakiroglu are in the finals of the light flyweight

Colombia’s Ingrit Valencia achieved medals in all of the major championships during her long career but she is a semi-finalist at the Women’s World Boxing Championships for the first time. The Colombian veteran is the No.1 on the American continent, she was confident in the first round against Uzbekistan’s Aziza Yokubova. Her rival eliminated stars during her road to the semi-finals in the light flyweight (50kg) but Valencia was too experienced for her. The Colombian had excellent defensive skills in the third round and she did not take any risk to keep her advantage. Valencia’s success means that she can box against Turkey’s Busenaz Cakiroglu who had a wonderful semi-final against Spain’s prospect Laura Fuertes.

“It was an excellent semi-final in a fantastic arena and I enjoyed each second in the ring today. I will do my best in the final,” said Valencia.

Perijoc and Akbas controlled their semi-finals

Romania’s Lacramioara Perijoc had three hard fights during her road to the semi-finals but because of her strong performance in second and third rounds, she could overturn all of them. The EUBC European Champion in the bantamweight (54kg) was more focused in the first round this time, and she showed energetic performance against a former champion, Dina Zholaman of Kazakhstan. Perijoc landed less punches in the second round but it was still enough to take the lead on the judges’ scorecards. In her first bout here, in Istanbul, the Romanian eliminated the defending champion, Huang Hsiao-Wen from Chinese Taipei. Perijoc’s final opponent will be Turkey’s EUBC European U22 Champion Hatice Akbas who used a similar style of boxing as Busenaz Cakiroglu today. The 21-year-old Turkish girl was too quick for Thailand’s Preedakamon Tintabthai in the second semi-final of the weight class.

Ferreira vs Ellis final in the lightweight 

Brazil’s defending World Champion Beatriz Ferreira is the main favorite in the lightweight (60kg) once again following Ireland’s Kellie Harrington suffering a hand injury before the start of the Championships. Ferreira used her dynamic attacks to catch Italy’s Alessia Mesiano who achieved a gold medal at the 2016 Women’s World Boxing Championships. The Brazilian finished the first round with a strong combination which guaranteed her advantage on the scorecards after three minutes. The Sri Lankan referee counted the Italian at the end of the second round when Ferreira caught her with short-ranged punches. Mesiano tried several techniques and kinds of punches in their semi-final but Ferreira responded to all of her actions with double attacks. Ferreira won more than 95% of her international contests and she remained unbeaten this year after this semi-final which guaranteed her next meeting with United States’ Rashida Ellis.

“I am satisfied with my today’s performance and I believe I worked hard in all of the rounds. The second was the best one but the most important was the victory for today as I know my final will be very difficult. I met with my final opponent from USA several times, last time in the final of the AMBC American Boxing Championships and I know she is strong and fast,” added Ferreira.

Surmeneli meets with Cavanagh in the welterweight final

Canada produced fantastic women boxers in the previous two decades. The country is No.6 in the all-time rankings of the World Championships with 26 medals. Their new stars Charlie Cavanagh and Tamara Thibeault added further medals to this bright collection in Istanbul. Cavanagh was the first among them who tried to reach the finals in the evening session and she had the right strategy against Algeria’s Ichrak Chaib. The Canadian, who claimed a gold medal at the 2018 AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships, was not only taller than the North African but had better technical skills and faster movements. Chaib looked satisfied with her semi-final place and guaranteed medal, therefore, Cavanagh is to meet with Turkey’s star Busenaz Surmeneli for the gold of the welterweight (66kg).

“To be honest I expected that I would be a finalist here at the World Championships but it is a fantastic feeling that I made this job and eliminated today my opponent. I had the height advantage and I could keep my Algerian opponent on long distance today,” commented the young Canadian of her well-deserved success.

“I have never met with this Thai boxer previously and I did not see her in any previous competitions. I have to watch her in the future. She is a strong opponent and actually, there are no easy opponents at the World Championships. I hope I will get the support of the fans once again in the final to defend my title,” said Surmeneli who had a tough semi-final against Thailand’s Janjaem Suwannapheng.

Thibeault vs Bylon in a unique middleweight re-match

Canada’s second semi-finalist, the AMBC American Champion Tamara Thibeault achieved a bronze medal at the last edition of the Championships in Ulan-Ude. The Canadian middleweight (75kg) boxer was 15cm taller than her semi-final opponent, Mozambique’s Rady Adosinda Gramane and she had the speed to control the contest. Thibeault landed not only jabs which stopped her rival, but several right-handed uppercuts against Gramane who exceeded all of the expectations with her medal in Istanbul. The Canadian won their meeting today but they can possibly box once again in the upcoming Commonwealth Games in two and a half months. Panama’s 2014 World Champion Atheyna Bylon eliminated France’s Davina Michel in the second semi-final and she can prepare for the repeat of the final of the AMBC American Boxing Championships against the Canadian.

“It was a fantastic fight today and I felt from the start that I am better and I can win this semi-final. I know my final opponent well and I am planning to beat her this time,” commented Bylon.

Sennur Demir is Turkey’s fifth finalist

Turkey’s Sennur Demir achieved silver and bronze medals at the Women’s World Boxing Championships previously, therefore, her target was clear before the start, to get her first title. The veteran boxer returned to the heavyweight (+81kg) before this event and used her height advantage to stop Poland’s Lidia Fidura in the first round. The Polish boxer increased the tempo at the beginning of the second round and she landed several punches but she did not take care of her defense. Demir was under strong pressure in the third round but she survived these moments and advanced to the final of the heaviest weight class. She will now meet Morocco’s Khadija Mardi who moved up to this category this year and stopped Uzbekistan’s Mokhira Abdullayeva.

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