NEW TOWN, North Dakota (July 14, 2007) – Returning to his trademark aggressive, body attack style, Vassiliy Jirov (37-3-1, 30 KOs) positioned himself in the cruiserweight division with a second-round TKO win against veteran Kenny “The Raven” Craven last night (Saturday, July 14) at 4 Bears Casino and Lodge in New Town, North Dakota.
Article posted on 15.07.2007
Former IBF cruiserweight champion Jirov hopes that his impressive victory will move him up in the ratings and in the mix for a world title shot, possibly against WBA title-holder Virgil “Quicksilver” Hill, in the not too distant future. “I’m back,” Jirov proclaimed after the fight. “People were starting to forget about me. I’m looking forward to fighting any of the champions and becoming a world champion again. Fighting Hill definitely is a possibility; I want to fight him.”
Jirov won the opening round and broke down Craven in the second, dropping “The Raven” with a vicious left hook to the body for an eight count. A barrage of Jirov’s body shots to an already sore Craven, who was trying to survive on the ropes, led referee Ed Obregon to give Kenny a standing eight count. Craven, however, never made it off of the ropes as Jirov continued his assault until Obregon stopped the action at 2:18 of the second round.
“I had gotten away from my body punching and wanted to get back to it,” Jirov added. “This was my first fight after a long layoff and I didn’t throw all of my punches right. You can spar but you really need fights to be one of the big guys again in the cruiserweight division. In the next month or two I want to get right back in the ring. I came back with a good performance tonight as a cruiserweight.”
Unbeaten prospect Shawn “The Sioux Warrior” Hawk (15-0-1, 12 KOs) used a punishing jab to cut Roy “Bo” Skipper (11-5-2, 7 KOs) over the right eye less than a minute into the opening round and then dropped Skipper with a straight right for a mandatory eight count. Shawn put Skipper on his back in Hawk’s corner with a picture perfect straight right, left (hook combination that he finished up with a devastating left upper cut. Skipper was counted out at 2:57.
“That’s my bread and butter,” Hawk described his last three punches. “The original weight was 200 but we decided to move up and try it as a heavyweight. It’s definitely possible that I’ll be going back to cruiserweight, but I felt good at this weight, quick and strong.”
Las Vegas-based high profile defense attorney Marc “The Defender” Saggese (2-0, 2 KOs) need only 2:08 to stop pro debuting Paul Farrell (0-1). Referee Jeff Wahl gave Farrell a standing eight count and soon halted the bout when Saggese trapped Farrell on the ropes and fired a series of unanswered punches.
“I don’t know if I was as structurally sound as I wanted,” Saggese said after the fight, “but I got the job done. Now it’s back to the gym to work on more finesse.”
“Thriller On The River,” presented by 4 Bears Casino & Lodge in association with Sports and Entertainment Media, Inc., will air worldwide on a taped delay basis for free. Dates and times will soon be announced (go to www.pinnaclefitenite.com).
HEAVYWEIGHTS: Shawn Hawk, 228 lbs., Fort Thompson, SD WKO1 (2:57) Roy Skipper, 192 lbs, Laurel, MS; Billy Johnson, 225 lbs., Minot, ND WKO3 (2:13) Archie Hopkins, 231 lbs., Fargo, ND. CRUISERWEIGHTS: Vassiliy Jirov, 200 lbs., Scottsdale, AZ via Kazakhstan WTKO2 (2:18) Kenny Craven, 198 lbs., Ellisville, MS; Marc Saggese, 195 lbs., Las Vegas, NV WTKO1(2:08) Paul Farrell, 177 lbs., McLaughlin, SD, Chris Hugh, 196 lbs., Bismarck, ND WKO2 (1:00) Lyle Kruger, 194 lbs., Parshall, ND. LIGHT MIDDLEWEIGHTS: Nick Runningbear, 152 lbs., McLaughlin, SD WDEC4 (39-36, 38-35, 38-35) Silas Ortley, 152 lbs., McLaughlin, SD.