Another year, another Tatneft Cup tournament has come to an end. Yesterday in Kazan, Russia, the Tatneft Cup 2012 Final took place, with three tournament champions being crowned, at 70kg, 80kg and heavyweight respectively. There were also three other fights on the card, featuring the likes of Alexey Ignashov and Enriko Kehl.
In the 70kg final, highly touted up and coming 70kg fighter Enriko Gogokhia was able to earn a decision win over Maxim Smirnov. Gogokhia was definitely the sharper of the two fighters, even beating Smirnov at his own game, boxing. Unlike most Gogokhia fights, there wasn't much body work from him but like most of his fights, he dealt out tons of damage with low kicks to Smirnov's back leg.
In the 80kg final, the LiverKick #2 light heavyweight Hicham el Gaoui and Alexander Stetsurenko had another close fight, just like the one they had last year at the Tatneft 2011 Final which saw Hicham take the win that time. This time, Stetsurenko ended up getting the decision victory. With Tatneft's rules, if there are no knockdowns in the first three rounds, then an extra round automatically happens. Hicham probably won after three rounds but had no knockdowns, so the fight went to an extra round where it was razor thin between them, with Stetsurenko getting the win.
The heavyweight final saw Tsotne Rogava take a decision over Vladimir Toktasynov as Rogava simply outworked his opponent for the entirety of the fight.
The highlight of the other fights was at 70kg with Enriko Kehl continuing the roll he's been on with a dominant decision over Magomed Magomedov. Kehl hurt Magomedov to the body late and after that it was one way traffic. Kehl comes off a dominant stoppage of Mohammed Medhar and a late stoppage of Nonsai, both taking place last month in Germany.
Alexey Ignashov took a decision over Zinedine Hameur-Lain in typical Ignashov-for-the-past-8-years fashion, still not showing any flashes of the "prime" Ignashov that so many people hope will one day come back. At 80kg, Urunbeck Esenkulov won a decision over Errol Koning, though I thought Koning had definately done more to deserve the win.
70kg Final: Enriko Gogokhia def. Maxim Smirnov by decision.
80kg Final: Alexander Stetsurenko def. Hicham el Gaoui by decision.
HW Final: Tsotne Rogava def. Vladimir Toktasynov by decision.
70kg: Enriko Kehl def. Magomed Magomedov by decision.
80kg: Urunbeck Esenkulov def. Errol Koning by decision.
HW: Alexey Ignashov def. Zinedine Hameur-Lain by decision.