Boxing, and European amateur heavyweight title holder, Eugeni Gorstkov has become "Absolute Champion" of the Soviet Union for the third time.
Boxing, and European amateur heavyweight title holder, Eugeni Gorstkov has become "Absolute Champion" of the Soviet Union for the third time. In the final of the Crystal Glove Championships in Leningrad on Tuesday (27 December) Gorstkov met 1975 champion Pjotr Zajev, and won on a unanimous points decision. It was his 128th win in 142 contests.
SYNOPSIS: There were 15 entries for the championships, which were held over four days.
It was the seventh meeting between Gorstkov and Zajev and Gorstkov, in the white shorts, had won four of their previous six contests. In the opening round the European champion, who at 94 kilos was six kilos heavier, was happy to give ground and let Zajev do the chasing.
Zajev's higher work rate gave him a slight edge at the end of the first, but in the second Gorstkov, working well behind his left, began to take control. At close quarters there was a lot of wrestling and holding, and the referee stepped in twice to warn them. Zajev got through with several punches over the top, but the cleaner work was Gorstkov's.
The championships attracted 6,000 fans, and as the bout progressed Gorstkov began to jab and move with the confidence that won him the European title in East Germany last June.
By the third Zajev was bleeding from the nose, and Gorstkov was well on his way to another win over his old rival. The championships emphasised the tremendous strength in depth the Soviet Union has achieved at heavy-weight level and Gorstkov was a worthy winner.
Only the United States can match the Soviet Union's heavyweight power, but neither country is expected to win the gold medal at the 1980 Moscow Olympics....the hot favourite is again double gold medallist. Teofilio Stevenson of Cuba.