By Srithar Visuasam: Friday’s fight night at the Malvern Town Hall, Melbourne, Australia had everyone at the edge of their seats, with the two main bouts electrifying the strong crowd in attendance.
Article posted on 14.11.2011
In the main event, Joel Casey (14-9-3, 9 KOs) took to the ring against Manny Vlamis (11-2, 8 KOs) in a twelve round encounter to decide the PABA light heavyweight title. Casey, the southpaw and taller fighter, set out to control the jab and keep the fight at range. In the opening first couple of rounds, this strategy seemed to work to good effect. However, by the third round Vlamis was finding success by working the inside and penetrating through Casey’s defence.
Casey, a tough fighter, who had only been stopped once in his previous eight defeats prior to this bout, seemed to struggle with preventing Vlamis’ offensive attacks, with Vlamis dictating terms from there on in. Casey found some success in the middle rounds and tried to step up his aggression a couple of notches, which would test Vlamis endurance, given he had never fought for more than six rounds prior to entering this bout. But Vlamis was up to the task and kept coming forward.
In round eight, a left-right combo from Vlamis rocked Casey and entering the tenth round, Vlamis had the momentum on his side. In the middle stages of round 10, Vlamis knocked Casey down with a big left hand which looked to have ended the fight. However, Casey was right to recommence, but was unable to mount any challenge as Vlamis went to finish Casey and with Casey struggling to stay mobile and attack Vlamis, the ringside doctor in conjunction with referee Malcolm Bulner stopped the fight, 2:20 into the round. Vlamis, a deserved winner, takes the PABA light heavyweight title and a top 15 WBA ranking to go with it.
In the co-main event, Michael Zerafa (6-0, 3 KOs) kept his undefeated record intact, although barely, in scraping a split decision victory over Faisal Fayad (5-3) over 8 rounds to capture the Victoria State light middleweight title. Zerafa came out fast and looked to dominate Fayad early, but Fayad withstood the early onslaught and started landing some heavy shots on Zerafa , including a big left in round four.
Zerafa bled from the nose and Fayad carried a great deal of momentum in the middle rounds, however Zerafa was not to be denied as he still maintained a solid workrate and was able to put together some solid combinations to finish out the fight in good stead.
In a close fight that could have went either way, the judges had it 77-75 to Fayad and 79-74 and 77-75 to Zerafa. ESB had it a 76-76 draw. In less than 8 months, Zerafa has gone from debutant to Victoria State champion, a terrific year for the young Victorian.
In other bouts, light middleweights Ashley McDermott (1-0-4) and David Galvin (0-1-2) fought a six round majority draw with scorecards reading 58-56 to McDermott and the other two a 57-57 draw, McDermott’s record moving to a rather unique four draws from five bouts, a tally you would more likely see with a football team.
Super middleweight Ben Capps (1-0) defeated Jarrod Jones (0-2) via unanimous decision over four rounds, 40-35, 40-35 and 40-36 and Oscar Ledlin defeated Braidin Clardey via split decision in a battle of the debutants, with scorecards reading 38-39 Clardey and the other two 39-37 for Ledlin.
The night was held by Peter Maniatis Promotions.