By Per Ake Persson
Russian giant Nikolai Valuev won a unanimous decision over John Ruiz in a rematch to win the vacant WBA heavyweight title last night at Max Schmeling Halle in Berlin, Germany.
It was scored 116-111, 116-113 and 114-113, all for Valuev, but it was however first announced as a split decision, which was due to a mix-up in the scoring slips used by the judges.
There were no knockdown, although Team Ruiz claimed there should have been one ruled when Valuev slipped in the second round.
Valuev had a point deducted in the tenth round for pushing. But overall, the big Russian was scoring with an effective jab and landed with the cleaner punches to come out a close but deserved winner.
The new champion will make a voluntary defence in December.
Arena Box Promotion has offered Valuev to come to Turkey to fight Sinan Samil Sam. If Valuev's promoter, Sauerland Event, accepts is a different story, though.
In the final bout of a long evening, heavyweight Kali Meehan knocked out Dominique Alexander in the second of a scheduled ten rounder.
Francesco Pianeta won the vacant European Union heavyweight title when Brit Scott Gammer retired with a broken right hand and didn´t come out for the ninth round. Pianeta was ahead 78-74 on all cards after eight rounds.
Cengiz Koc won a close, majority decision over Rene Dettweiler in an internal Sauerland Event heavyweight eliminator. Both men went all out and put up their probably best performances of their respective careers.
Justin Savi impressed in outscoring tough Ukrainian Nikita Lukin over eight rounds at junior lightweight.
Welter Frank Shabani won over eight frames against Italian Giuseppe Langella.
Cruiser Yoan Pablo Hernandez floored Santiago De Paula three times in the first, but took until the fifth before the bout was stopped with the Dominican out on his feet.
Russian heavy Andrey Fedosov, now signed with Sauerland Event, stopped American Harold Sconiers in the fourth.