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Press Report: A Tussle in Tirana
Photos and Story
by John E.G. Wilson
May 15, 2010
 

     
   
   
   
   

(MAY 15) History was made on Sunday night, 2nd May 2010 in Tirana the capital city of Albania.

Albania is a small nation of 3.5 million people situated in Southern Europe on the Adriatic coast opposite Italy.

It was in this city that the W.B.F. WORLD BOXING FEDERATION chose to have its 1st World Convention from the 30th April to the 3rd May 2010.

As part of the activities an exciting evening of boxing was held on Sunday the 2nd May in the large old communist built concrete Pallati i Sportif ďAsllan RusiĒ sports stadium in Tirana city center.

Fans of womensí boxing were able to witness history in the making as the FIRST WOMENíS PROFESSIONAL BOXING MATCH IN ALBANIA took place.

LAURA SAPERSTEIN v DANIELA DAVID

Next to the top of the billís male World Championship fight was this womenís 6 x 2 minute round International Light welterweight match.

LAURA SAPERSTEIN (38) was continuing her return to British professional boxing after a yearís absence recovering from an injury suffered in rugby training.

Born in Australia, Laura now lives in London, England. She is qualified lawyer. Before this fight she had a professional record of 8 wins and no losses. Her amateur record was 10 wins and no losses, and in 2005 she was the England Womensí Amateur Boxing Association Lightweight Champion. However in her amateur and professional career she had never fought more than 4 rounds. This was to be her baptism at 6 !

Her opponent , was DANIELA DAVID (4-18-0) a vastly more experienced 28 year old super featherweight southpaw boxer from Bucharest Romania. DAVID works as a secretary but is also a University student studying physical education and expects to graduate in two years time. She is a pleasant black haired former amateur World boxing champion in 2002 with between 80 to 90 amateur fights on her record. Her last professional fight was in Salford, England on Saturday 10th April 2010 against the Russian/English boxer ANGEL McKENZIE to whom she lost on points.

DAVID seemed to have recovered from the badly bleeding nose which she suffered in that fight.

At the Weigh In SAPERSTEIN weighed 61.2 kilos and DAVID 61.9 kilos.

The arena lights were dimmed, loud music was played and proceeded by a young woman with a large mastiff dog DAVID entered the hall and climbed into the ringís Blue Corner, she was clad in a black sports bra with a white protector and bright red satin shorts with black side stripes. She received a cheer of encouragement from the spectators.

A few minutes later SAPERSTEIN was similarly led into the arena by a young blond lady in knee boots accompanied by a large black mastiff dog. She took the Red Corner to polite applause.

SAPERSTEIN who owns a company - boxxer WORLD - which makes boxing sportswear was wearing one of her own products. A bright red sparkle sports bra with a brief red sparkle miniskirt with ďLauraĒ embroidered on the waistband at the front and incorporated a large black motif on her right thy and a patriotic British Union flag across her bottom.

Round 1

After touching gloves both boxers started by flicking their gloves in each others face, but without any contact.

SAPERSTEIN made the first attack with a straight left and right hook and then a swinging right hander aimed at the head, all fell 6 inches short ! DAVID backed away. SAPERSTEIN continued with her rush at her opponent throwing a straight left and right which also did not connect. The force of her charge however drove DAVID back against the ropes into a clinch. DAVID tried a weak counter attack. More feinting. Both women threw more punches but few connected until SAPERSTEIN drove DAVID into the opposite neutral corner.

There were a series of short sharp exchanges of blows, with again many failing to reach their intended target although SAPERSTEIN got in two good right hand jabs to the solar plexus and DAVID traded some of her piston like straight rights and lefts. In a fighting melee DAVID briefly held SAPERSTEINíS head round the neck. SAPERSTEIN was the more openly aggressive, but DAVID demonstrated her skill at evading punches.

SAPERSTEIN was unused to fighting a southpaw style opponent.

SAPERSTEINíS style is to drop her right shoulder Ė with her right glove protecting her face whilst holding her left arm more loosely and much lower.

DAVID threw a good left hook as the round ended.

It was found out afterwards that due to a mistake on the part of the Time Keeper the women boxed for 3 minutes in this round instead of the 2 minutes stipulated.

SAPERSTEIN won this round.

 

Round 2

After a few moments of feinting by both women SAPERSTEIN attacked but missed with her punches and was quickly driven back by DAVID who took more of the initiative in this round. DAVID launched her own two handed piston like attack landing effective blows. Although she appears to attack in a diffident manner she is a strong girl and her punches can be deceptively heavy.

In the scraps SAPERSTEIN crouched so low to avoid DAVIDís blows that she received a brief warning from the Referee.

Both women caught the other with solid punches to the head and stomach. SAPERSTEIN getting the worse of it.

SAPERSTEIN then took the initiative with her aggressive lunging two handed attacks with DAVID landing counterpunches.

DAVID was undoubtedly sharper this fight than her fight against ANGEL McKENZIE. The tempo of the contest much faster. Whilst her style was unaltered she was quicker in her punching and boxed with greater determination. ( she told your correspondent that she had been unwell when she boxed in Salford.)

This was definitely DAVIDíS round.

Round 3

DAVID started the attack with fast right and left combinations. SAPERSTEIN fought back.

In a tussle, DAVID briefly nearly fell through the ropes near the Red Corner, but she quickly regained her equilibrium and whilst SAPERSTEIN appeared to chase her round the ring Ė landing some good punches, DAVID retaliated with good counterpunches of her own.

The contest developed into a fast moving series of clashes, usually instigated by SAPERSTEIN with a violent exchanges of blows. Whilst SAPERSTEINíS strategy was to take the fight to her opponent , DAVID responded with her own forays and her effective counterpunching which gave SAPERSTEIN trouble

The action see sawed across the ring as first SAPERSTEIN and then DAVID attacked and retreated. This was a hard fought round.

This was again DAVIDíS round.


Round 4

The round started again with DAVID flicking her straight right hand at SAPERSTEIN, but too short.

The pace seemed a little slower. There were a number of fighting clinches Ė often ending up with SAPERSTEINíS head entangled in a melee of arms.

SAPERSTEIN continued her attacks - a rush forward with straight lefts followed by right hooks. Again not all reached their intended mark. DAVID counter attacked forcing SAPERSTEIN temporarily to back away. SAPERSTEIN kept trying to get through inside, but DAVID was fighting more aggressively and getting in some good blows of her own. Trying to take even more of the initiative SAPERSTEIN launched an aggressive two hand charging attack which briefly drove DAVID into a neutral corner.


DAVID delivered a heavy left hand hook to SAPERSTEINíS head as the round ended.

This was again DAVIDíS round.




Round 5

DAVID was the first to make a hesitant attack but SAPERSTEIN fought back with a series of fast very heavy left hooks to the head which fortunately for DAVID failed to land. However the vehemence of the intended blows caused her to back away. A clinch ensued. Then short encounters where they traded tough jabs.

The pace did not slacked with SAPERSTEIN keeping up her relentless two handed attacks, but running into stout resistance. Both women caught her opponent with stout blows to the face. This was tough fighting with SAPERSTEIN covering up before resuming her attacks.

SAPERSTEINíS round on aggression.

Round 6

The last round started with a very brief period of feinting followed by SAPERSONíS attack culminating in brief clinches. SAPERSTEIN threw a heavy right hand aimed at the head which DAVID ducked and in the ensuing tussle the Referee gave SAPERSTEIN a brief warning for holding. Quite a lot of brawling took place with fighting clinches with the Referee having to intervene. It became DAVIDíS turn to put her head down and push her opponent. Both women scored sharp heavy jabs to each others face in the final seconds of the match.

They continued to fight to the last bell, trading blows in quick succession. They were rewarded with the cheers and whistles of the audience.

This was SAPERSTEINíS round.

Judge Jean Marcel Nartz ( Germany ) scored 57 Ė 57 each, Judge Artur Ellensohn ( Germany ) 57-57 each and Referee Anastas Kobuz ( Albania ) 60 Ė 56 in favour of SAPERSTEIN

After consultation amongst the officials the bout was declared a DRAW on a majority decision, and both boxers were presented with trophies and raised their arms in triumph.

As professionals, SAPERSTEIN advances to 8 wins, no losses and 1 draw and DAVID to 4 wins 19 losses and 1 draw.


This was a fast and attractive contest . Both women fought hard and this was a good advert for womensí professional boxing which was shown on Albanian T.V.

As I mentioned earlier in this report, this was the first time that SAPERSTEIN had fought for 6 rounds and against such an experienced opponent. She had also had difficulty in making the weight. If many of her punches had found their intended mark she would have won. She needs more experience. In the circumstances she put up a very creditable performance

DAVID also put up a creditable performance. She fought better than in Salford against ANGEL McKENZIE. If she can put more speed into her footwork and aggression into her fighting she would reverse her poor professional record.

A rematch is most certainly called for !

STOP PRESS 14th MAY 2010

LAURA SAPERSTEIN is fighting again on Miranda Carterís LEFT JAB Promotion ď FATHERíS DAY AT YORK HALLĒ at 2pm on Sunday afternoon 20th, June 2010 at York Hall, Bethnal Green, London. England.   © John E.G.Wilson

 
     
     
   
 
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