Boxing: Darchinyan 1st Australian since K. Tszyu to unify division

The Australian, Australia
Nov 2 2008

Vic Darchinyan becomes first Australian since Kostya Tszyu to unify a

November 02, 2008

VIC Darchinyan announced himself as his country’s newest boxing
superstar today.

Darchinyan has become the first Australian since Kostya Tszyu to unify
a division with a brutal knockout of Mexican glamour boy Cristian

Darchinyan’s stunning upset made him the the first man to unify the
super flyweight division, adding the World Boxing Council, World
Boxing Association belts to his International Boxing Federation title.

The Armenian-born power puncher knocked Mijares down with a vicious
uppercut in the first round, pummelled him over the next seven and
finished him off in the ninth with a powerful straight left.

The Home Depot Center, located in Los Angeles’ southern suburbs, was
packed with Mexican boxing fans screaming for Darchinyan’s blood, but
the stadium was left deathly silent by his demolition of the feted

The fight ended with Mijares flat on his back and a doctor rushing to
his aid.

The 27-year-old Mexican went into the fight as a short-priced
favourite, with bookmakers from Las Vegas to Alice Springs not giving
Darchinyan much chance.

The US media also wrote Darchinyan off.

A poll of 31 of America’s top boxing writers released on the eve of
the fight had just six willing to predict the Australian would win.

Darchinyan used it as motivation.

At a jubilant post-fight press conference Darchinyan, who had
predicted he would knock Mijares out, made the American press eat
their words.

`All the writers, did I keep my promise?’ a feisty Darchinyan, 32,

`Did I?

`I told you what I would do.

`I said I was going to destroy him and knock him out.

`I delivered.’

Mijares, a skilled technical boxer, could not match Darchinyan’s

The upper-cut that first flattened him came with 20 seconds left in
round one, allowing Mijares to stumble to his feet and be saved by the

The bout-ending left also came late in the ninth, with just eight
seconds left, but this time Mijares was unable to get up.

Mijares was too dazed to give interviews after the fight, but managed
to walk from the ring.

Darchinyanfell in love with Australia while a member of the Armenian
boxing team at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and became a citizen in 2004.

The last Australian to unify a division was Tszyu, who first won the
IBF, WBC and WBA light welterweight belts in 2001 with an equally
stunning knockout upset over then rising star, American Zab Judah.

The win gives Darchinyan a 31 win (25 knockout), one loss, one draw
professional record.

Darchinyan and his American promoter, Gary Shaw, said they may look to
higher weight divisions for big money fights.

Mijares, who had a 25-fight winning streak before today, now has a 36
win (15 KO), four loss, two draw record.

Earlier at the Home Depot Center, Darchinyan’s Sydney stable-mate
Victor Oganov suffered a controversial loss in his super middleweight
world title elimination fight against hyped American Andre Direll.

Russian-born Oganov protested angrily when referee Ray Corona stopped
the fight 30 seconds into the sixth round.

Oganov was hit with an upper-cut before the stoppage and had taken a
barrage of blows in the earlier rounds, but was still on his feet and
ready to continue when the fight was halted.

`The main thing is the safety of the fighter,’ Corona explained.

`He took some heavy blows.’

Oganov was also not given much of a chance of victory, with unbeaten
Direll, a bronze medallist at the 2004 Athens Olympics, the
overwhelming favourite and hyped as one of the division’s top

The win gives Direll a shot at the World Boxing Organisation’s super
middleweight title.



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