Matteo Signani successfully defended his European middleweight title against Ruben Diaz.
Matteo Signani successfully defended his European middleweight title with a comfortable points win over Ruben Diaz. As a result, the Italian veteran holds hopes of securing a big fight. Still, he may consider alternative options following a lackluster showing that will have a number of young contenders desperate to face him.
For 12 rounds, Signani and Diaz, both in their 40s, failed to provide any spark as they fought as you’d expect men their age to fight. A clash of heads that produced a severe cut over the left eye of Diaz threatened to explode the fight into life, but that was just a brief highlight rather than a platform for action.
After a dozen forgettable sessions, both fighters appeared relieved to hear the final bell, and it’ll be interesting to see their next moves after Signani took the fight on the scorecards. Diaz has hinted at retirement, but for Signani, Europe’s premier middleweight, he could be the ideal target for Felix Cash and Anthony Fowler in 2022.
For full highlights from tonight’s show, please read below.
Matteo Signani kept his continental belt with a scrappy win over Ruben Diaz. The Italian landed the better shots over 12 quiet rounds but it wasn't the all-action fight that many expected. With both fighters in their early forties, the age of both men was obvious as most rounds were uneventful. Despite the lack of exchanges, it was obvious that Signani was doing the better work, and that was made clear as the Italian took the fight on all three scorecards.
A big effort from Diaz in what could be the last round of his career. He gives it everything he has but it won't be enough on the final scorecards. Diaz takes the round but it should be a routine win for Signani. 10-9 Diaz.
This fight badly needs the final bell. Diaz looks like he's content to hear the final bell and Signani is doing all he can to allow his opponent his wish. It's the Italian in control but he's being allowed an easy passage to victory. 10-9 Signani.
Signani is now in full control. He's using his jab a lot better than in the fight's early stages and it's preventing Diaz from getting close. There's a long way to go but it appears that Diaz has already ran out of ideas. 10-9 Signani.
Signani has found his range, and he used it to good effect in round four. Diaz did come alive in the session's closing stages, but it was too late to take the nod on this unofficial scorecard. 10-9 Signani.
Mauro Forte and Francesco Grandelli gave their all during a terrific featherweight encounter that was close throughout. Both men enjoyed moments of success at various stages of the fight. However, after 12 hard-fought rounds, the contest was scored a draw. Hopefully, both fighters can run this one back in the early stages of 2022.
Tony Dixon breathed life into his career with a stunning knockout over Francesco Russo. Inactive for two years, Dixon showed no sign of ring rust as he started fast against the local favorite. Under brief pressure from Russo, Dixon found a brilliant right hand to instantly end the fight seconds after it had started.
Bec Connolly's brave effort was not enough against Maria Cecchi as she was well beaten by the highly-touted Italian. Cecchi was in control from the first bell as she landed her excellent left hand frequently. Connolly was consistently monitored by the referee and her corner, but she remained tough enough to hear the final bell. Cecchi was handed the nod from the judges with scores of 80-72 x 2, and 79-73.
Armando Casamonica continued to build experience in the pro ranks with a hard fought win over Mauro Loli. The young Italian, a fighter with big aspirations, was pushed hard throughout the six round contest but he squeezed him on the scorecards via majority decision.
The Croatian is given the win. Demcenko had been stopped just once before in his career, and he wobbled in the fifth after a string of heavy rights from Sep. However, he was rescued by the bell and recovered admirably for the sixth and final round.
It was clear that 35-year-old Sep was the better, and he maintains his undefeated record with his latest in Italy. He is 11-0, six rounds of experience after two years of inactivity and will move up the light heavyweight rankings as he chases a title shot.