Wednesday, May 22, 2024  |


Rob Brant victorious in homecoming, dropping Khasan Baysangurov twice for 11th round TKO

Brant (right) tags Khasan Baysangurov. Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank
Fighters Network

Middleweight Rob Brant broke down Khasan Baysangurov, dropping him twice before the fight was stopped in round 11 Friday night before a sold-out crowd of 2,225 at the Grand Casino in Hinckley, Minnesota.

Brant was fighting for the first time since defeating Ryota Murata by unanimous decision on Oct. 20. He was also fighting near his hometown of Saint Paul, about an 80-minute drive from Hinkley.

The 21-year-old Baysangurov, who made his pro debut at the age of 16, was fighting for the first time in the United States after fighting in Russia and the Ukraine.

From the opening bell, Brant was the aggressor against Baysangurov, who looked overwhelmed and had to retreat against the ropes.

Brant (25-1, 17 knockouts) dropped Baysangurov with a right hand to the head about a minute into the second round. Baysangurov was not hurt as he got up on his feet, fighting on.

Baysangurov, who entered the fight ranked No. 8 by the WBA, began letting his hands go in round eight, connecting with right hands to the head of Brant. The punches from Baysangurov left their marks as swelling appeared around Brant’s eyes. Brant was undeterred, effectively countering to the head, producing a flow of blood from the nose of Baysangurov.

Baysangurov rallied in round 10, letting his hands go and connecting with a series of right hands to the head of Brant.

That rally was short-lived as Brant hurt Baysangurov with a right hand to the head more than a minute into round 11. A barrage of punches moments later dropped Baysangurov to the canvas. Baysangurov stood up, but Brant punished him with another series of punches, prompting referee Mark Nelson to stop the fight at 1:42.

After the fight, Brant admitted that he suffered from cramping in his legs early on in the fight.

“I was very happy with my performance,” said Brant, who is co-promoted by Top Rank and Greg Cohen Promotions. “There are some things I need to tighten up, but tonight showed I can carry my power into the later rounds.”

Brant is rumored to face Murata in a rematch in Tokyo or Jeff Horn in Brisbane, Australia later this year, but Brant is eyeing the winner of the Canelo Alvarez-Daniel Jacobs fight on May 4.

“I think the recognized champion is the winner between Alvarez and Jacobs. Canelo is the champion and I’d love a fight with him down the road.”

Brant has won his last three fight since losing by decision to super middleweight Juergen Braehmer in October of 2017.

Baysangurov, who trained for the fight in the boxing hotbed of Oxnard, California, falls to 17-1 (7 KOs).

Francisco A. Salazar has written for since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper,, and He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at @FSalazarBoxing