New Faces: Shakhram Giyasov
Hometown: Bukhara, Uzbekistan
Weight class: Light welterweight
Height: 5-foot-9½ (176 cm)
Amateur record: 300-18
Turned pro: 2018
Pro record: 7-0 (6 knockouts)
Trainer: Joel Diaz and Antonio Diaz
Manager: Vadim Kornilov
Promoter: World of Boxing
Best night of pro career and why: Giyasov is most pleased with a win over tough Ghanaian Alfred Mensah last August.
“I felt perfect, and the guy hadn’t previously [been] stopped,” Giyasov told The Ring through Alik Frolov. “So he was durable enough to give me some rounds, to practice everything we were working on at the gym.”
Worst night of pro career and why: He feels he let his emotions get the better of him in his only fight so far to go the distance.
“My second fight versus [Gabor] Gorbics,” Giyasov said. “I was over excited because of the crowd, and I was rushing myself to get the KO. But it was great experience though. I’m confident that today I would stop him without question.”
Next Fight: Giyasov will face his toughest test to date against Emanuel Taylor at the Forum in Inglewood, California on the undercard of the Matchroom Boxing USA double-header featuring the 122-pound unification bout between Daniel Roman and TJ Doheny, and the eagerly anticipated junior bantamweight rematch between Srisaket Sor Ringvisai and Juan Estrada. That show will be broadcast live on DAZN.
This will be the Uzbek amateur standout’s first scheduled 10-rounder and he’s looking to move quickly.
Taylor, 28, will fight for the first time in nearly two years. He was last seen getting stopped for the only time in his career by Lucas Matthysse in five rounds. He holds wins over Raymond Serrano (TKO 6), Victor Cayo (TKO 8) and Karim Mayfield (UD 10) and although he lost to Chris Algieri (UD 10) Adrien Broner (UD 12) and Antonio Orozco (UD 10), he was competitive against all three.
If the time off has served Taylor well, the Maryland native could test Giyasov, although the feeling is it’s a big ask of him after such an extended absence from the ring. Giyasov will likely be too good and win a points decision.
Why he’s a prospect: Giyasov was an acclaimed amateur, winning three national titles. He was an Olympic silver medalist in Rio 2016, a World Championship gold medalist in 2017, a World Cup winner in 2014, a two-time Asian games champion in 2016 and 2017 and an Asian Sportsman of the Year in 2016. Giyasov has worked hard for his successes and feels his performances at the biggest tournaments justified his sacrifices.
“It took 15 years of my life,” he said. “Rivers of blood, sweat and tears that I put in all those years.”
Since making the move into the professional game, he has sparred with a trio of top Argentinians: Brian Castano, Lucas Matthysse and Fabian Maidana.
When asked what his biggest strength is, he simply says, “No quitting.”
Joel Diaz, famed for his work with former two-weight world titleholder Tim Bradley, expands on his fighter’s key skills.
“Giyasov is doing everything very well,” said the trainer. “If I had to choose, I would say that speed is probably his main attribute.”
His manager, Vadim Kornilov, works with many of the top Uzbekistan standouts feels his fighter will move quickly due to his amateur pedigree.
“Shakhram wants to fight for a world title in fight number 10 or 11,” explained Kornilov. “We’re going to do our best to make sure that he will get his opportunity.”
Why he’s a suspect: Giyasov seen many different styles in the amateurs and succeeded at the highest level so he doesn’t appear to have a particular weakness.
“All I need is pro seasoning,” said Giyasov. “More rounds in a real fight. I already have all the experience from amateurs. All I need is to fully trust my team, who are guiding me and I’ll be alright.”
Diaz agrees: “He basically has all the experience; he fought more than 300 amateur bouts. He needs to be more relaxed and take his time in the ring, sometimes he gets over excited, and that’s what we need to work on – stay composed, focused and relaxed.”
Despite top amateur credentials, some fighters fail to make the transition. It will be interesting to see how Giyasov adapts at top level.
Storylines: Giyasov is born and grew up in the ancient city of Bukhara, Uzbekistan. Bukhara is the fifth largest city in the central Asian country and due to its many historical areas is listed as a World Heritage Site.
“It was really good,” Giyasov said of his youth. “I’m from good family, we were not rich, but I was never hungry or stuff like that. Bukhara is the most beautiful historical city.”
He became interested in boxing when he was seven years old and things progressed from there.
“My dad was a boxer and started to train with my dad at home,” said the talented young prospect. “When I was 10, I went to the gym without permission and coach pulled me out. I was upset. He told me to come back with my dad. I told him, ‘OK I’ll be back, and I’ll became the next Roy Jones Jr.’ He laughed at me.”
His boxing hero is unsurprisingly future Hall of Famer and four-weight world champion Roy Jones Jr.
Giyasov is single, has a younger sister and says of his life: “Boxing is my life, I eat sleep and breath boxing.”
Feb. 23 – Edgar Puerta – TKO 5
Nov. 24 – Miguel Zamudio – TKO 1
Sept. 22 – Julio Laguna – TKO 4
Aug. 17 – Albert Mensah – TKO 3
July 14 – Daniel Echeverria – KO 1
Apr. 21 – Gabor Gorbics – UD 6
March 10 – Nicolas Atilio Velazquez – KO 1
Questions and/or comments can be sent to Anson at [email protected] and you can follow him on Twitter @AnsonWainwright
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