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World Series of Boxing: Poland edges Russia 3-2

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It was a home debut for Hussars Poland against last season's World Series of Boxing (WSB) Team finalists Russia in Group A and the hosts impressed as they recorded a hard-fought victory at the Hala Sportowo-Widowiskowa in Ggynia. Mateusz Mazik, Tomasz Jablonski and Sergei Kuzmin were the stars of the show as they earned the vital wins to give their team three deserved points.

It was the Bantamweights (50-54kg) up first with Polish southpaw Mateusz Mazik digging deep against the untested Russian Muhammad Shekhova. It was a real battle of wits with both boxers taking turns being the aggressor but Mazik's early endeavour gave him the edge after four rounds and he held out to win by split decision and give the Hussars a precious lead in the tie.

Russia's dominant force at Lightweight (57-61kg), Adlan Abdurashidov, then locked horns with orthodox Pole Adil Aslanov in a riveting encounter between two classy boxers. Abdurashidov controlled the opening three rounds with a display full of verve and maturity before peppering his rival with some stinging hooks as Aslanov took a standing eight-count in the fourth. The Russian 22-year-old orthodox fighter held firm to give his team parity in the match.

Tomasz Jablonski, the Polish poster-boy, then produced the performance of the night at Middleweight (68-73kg) with an exquisite display against WSB Season II's outstanding fighter Aleksandr Ivanov of Russia. Cool, calm and collected, Jablonski wowed the home crowd with sustained pressure to win all five rounds on each of the judges' scorecards. Hussars were now back on top.

In the Light Heavyweight (80-85kg) bout, Hussars Poland's 23-year-old Belarusian Sergei Kuzmin mounted a stunning comeback after trailing on points after two rounds to snatch the victory against Russia's Eduard Yakushev. Digging deep, Kuzmin's corner did a magnificent job by re-addressing his approach as he turned the fight on its head to dominate the final three rounds and give his team an unassailable lead in the contest following a hard-fought victory.

With the overall win now secured for the Hussars, the last fight of the night saw tough Russian orthodox 23-year-old Vitaly Kudukhov reduce the deficit for the visitors against Yan Sudzilouski at Heavyweight (91+kg). It was end to end but Kudukhov did enough in the first four rounds to win by split decision. The night however belonged to Hussars Poland who put on a great show.

It is a trip to Argentina on Saturday 8 December next for Hussars Poland as Russia host Azerbaijan Baku Fires the day before.