The 2018 – 2019 edition of the World Boxing Super Series – Super Lightweight Division tournament is one of the most highly anticipated boxing competitions taking place this year and next.
The event features 8 of the best lightweight boxers in the world who compete in a single elimination format tournament. These eight players first met in the quarter finals which took place between 7 October and 3 November this year.
In the first quarterfinal, which was held at the Yokohama Arena, Kiryl Relikh was better than the Russian Eduard Troyanovsky. On 27 October, two other quarter finals took place, between Ivan Baranchyk and Anthony Yigit, and between Regis Prograis nad the Brit Terry Flanagan. The bouts took place at the Lakefront Arena in New Orleans, and Regis Prograis and Ivan Baranchyk were the winners. The last quarter final match took place on 3 November at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow and in it Josh Taylor was better than Ryan Martin.
This meant that Prograis, Relikh, Taylor, and Baranchyk booked their semi-final spots and now they will fight it out for the World Boxing Super Series 2018/19 – Super Lightweight Division champion title. The first semi final is between the favourite Regis Prograis and the biggest outsider Kiryl Relikh, while the second one is a direct match-up between highly rated Josh Taylor and underdog Ivan Baranchyk. Let’s look at the championship prospects of each of these four competitors and their chances for the title.
Can Regis Prograis Continue his Undefeated March?
Regis Prograis is the biggest favourite for the World Boxing Super Series 2018/19 – Super Lightweight Division title and it will be a big surprise if he doesn’t at least make it to the final.
This is because Prograis is currently ranked as number one in the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board and is the WBC interim light-welterweight champion. In addition to this, he is undefeated in 23 bouts and currently has a record of 19 victories by knockout and only four victories by decision which is something which makes the blood run cold in his opponents.
Furthermore, Prograis trained at the Savannah Boxing Club in Houston early in his career with none other than Evander Holyfield. Even in his amateur days he would literally destroy opponents and still holds an impressive amateur record of 87-7.
This makes Regis the top candidate to win the World Boxing Super Series 2018/19 – Super Lightweight Division title and it is no surprise that bookmakers such as SportPesa, Ole777, Letou, and Fun88 give him odds of 21/20, which are the lowest odds of all the candidates, to win the highly rated tournament.
Can Josh Taylor Make It Difficult for Prograis?
Most bookmakers and sports betting operators expect that the final of the World Boxing Super Series 2018/19 – Super Lightweight Division tournament will be between Regis Prograis and Josh Taylor.
The reason for this is the fact that Taylor and Prograis are much better boxers than both of their Belarusian opponents. In fact, bookmakers such as SportPesa, Ole777, Fun88, and Letou make Josh Taylor a really close second favourite for the Super Lightweight Division title and give him only slightly higher odds of 6/4 to Prograis.
This is because the Scottish fighter has shown time and time again that he can make it in the big time and has built on an impressive taekwondo and boxing amateur career. In the professional ring Taylor is still undefeated and has a record of 12 victories by knockout and only two by decision. If anyone can make it difficult for Prograis, it is him.
Can Ivan Baranchyk Cause an Upset?
Baranchyk is a Belarusian light welterweight boxer who is called the Beast for a reason. He has the looks and the fighting style of a very dangerous predator and Josh Taylor will have to work hard to defeat him in the semi final.
In addition to being menacing and mean looking in the ring, Ivan also has a mean winning streak which stretches to 19 victories, 12 of which were executed with a knockout.
He defeated Anthony Yigit in a tough match in the quarter final and if that match was anything to go by, people who are writing Baranchyk off for the Super Lightweight Division title are doing that at their own peril.
Bookmakers certainly seem to be part of this group of people as betting operators such as SportPesa, Fun88, Letou, and Ole777 all give the Belarusian fighter pretty high odds of 13/2. If you feel that he can spring a surprise here, those odds are a great way to make some money.
Will Kiryl Relikh Surprise Everyone?
Relikh faces Prograis in the semi final and this is one of the reasons why he is not considered as a viable candidate to win the Super Lightweight Division title. Bookmakers seem to be on the same wavelength with people who are writing off Kiryl as they give him very high odds of 10/1.
But what bookmakers such as SportPesa, Ole777, Letou, and Fun88 probably don’t know is that Relikh actually was quite decent in his semi final match against Eduard Troyanovsky. If he can replicate the performance, which was so decisive in that bout, anything can happen in the semi final and the prospective final.
Relikh has had a long professional career and he has been a pro for more than 7 years, which is not something that some of the other fighters here can say. In that time he has amassed 23 victories, 19 of which have been via a knock out, while he has been defeated only twice. This should be enough of a recommendation for those punters who always look for the surprise winner in the pursuit of higher odds.