Azumah Nelson Fight Night: Ayi dethrones Osei-Bonsu

BY: Kweku Zurek
Azumah Nelson Fight Night: Ayi dethrones Osei-Bonsu
Osei-Bonsu crouches before his conqueror Ayi during the bout.

A suspected dislocated right shoulder did not prevent a masterful Patrick 'Aligator' Ayi from prying the national super featherweight championship title from the grasp of defending champion Abraham Osei-Bonsu Sunday dawn at the Bukom Boxing Arena in Accra.

The bout was the climax of a night celebrating the 60th birthday of world boxing legend Azumah Nelson and The Professor was sure to have been proud of Ayi who pushed through the pain barrier to outpoint Osei-Bonsu 117-114, 113-117 and 115-117 and in the process claim the Ghanaian super featherweight title by split decision after he sustained the injury in the seventh round.

The two boxers entered the ring after Nelson was presented with a silver vase and two title belts in honour of his contributions to the sport by the WBC and it was Osei-Bonsu who dictated the pace in the early rounds charging at his opponent aggressively with some wild, lunging punches.

However, Ayi switching between the orthodox and southpaw stances managed to evade most of those punches and countered to devastating effect. This left Osei-Bonsu with heavy swelling under both eyes and forced him into desperation which resulted in him (Osei-Bonsu) being docked a point for dragging the challenger (Ayi) down to the canvas in the fifth round.

In the seventh round, Ayi began to show signs that he had injured his shoulder after a wild right hook directed at Osei-Bonsu missed leaving him exposed to an attack and visibly in pain. In a bid to cope with the pain, he dangerously turned his back to his opponent to nurse his arm but recovered in time to evade Osei-Bonsu who was bearing down on him.

From then onwards, the challenger was restricted in the use of his right fist, using it only for defence and relying on his left jab to amass points. To the amazement of the crowd, Osei-Bonsu was unable to capitalise on the injury.

Ayi then proceeded to control the fight with ease, jabbing his opponent at will and coping with the occasional punch that landed on his face. Curiously, Osei-Bonsu was intent on berating his opponent in the ring rather than pressing home his advantage drawing a warning from the referee.

In the 12th round, Ayi who suffered a deep cut underneath his lower lip resisted the temptation to trade punches with Osei-Bonsu - who was jeered at the end of the bout by the spectators when he attempted to dance in anticipation of victory that never was.

In an interview after the bout, Ayi who improved his fight record to 18wins and 0 losses, said he would not grant Osei-Bonsu a rematch because he needs much tougher opponents to improve his boxing skills.

In the other bouts on the bill put together by the Azumah Nelson Boxing Promotions, Wahab Oluwaseun made light work of his Togolese challenger Moubi Sarouna felling him three times and opening a cut above his right eye forcing a sixth-round TKO stoppage in their super featherweight battle.

In a massive upset of the night, Stephen 'Anero' Abbey decked the physically imposing Emmanuel 'Kwahu Tyson' Danso two times before the referee came to his aid in the sixth round to save him from further punishment in their light heavyweight contest.

In a national super featherweight final eliminator, Michael 'One Bullet' Ansah after dominating the early rounds earned a unanimous decision verdict over Isaac Dowuona with the judges scoring it 99-93, 99-90 and 99-94 while Sheriff Quaye kayoed Benjamin Lamptey in round seven of their rematch to win the vacant National lightweight belt.