Manchester, England – David Haye (24-1, 22 KO) successfully defended his WBA heavyweight title for the first time at the M.E.N Arena as he knocked-down mandatory challenger John Ruiz (44-9-1, 30 KO) four times before Ruiz’s corner threw in the towel in the ninth to call a halt to the contest.
In the first thirty seconds, Haye landed a straight right hand that floored former titleholder Ruiz. The veteran got up on unsteady legs, before Haye knocked him down again with the use of illegal rabbit punches. Haye got a point deducted and admitted post-fight that it was “a little naughty” and “a bit of a cheap shot”.
Ruiz continued to march forward and was often punished by Haye’s right hand. Despite fighting off the back foot, Haye had no problem in winning the rounds off his fast jab, despite Ruiz dictating the pace and rhythm of the bout.
Ruiz was down again late on in the fifth following another Haye barrage, although the challenger’s complaints about rabbit punching fell on deaf ears. Haye began the sixth looking for the stoppage and floored Ruiz for the fourth time with another quick combination. Ruiz was dazed by Haye’s speed and struggled to nullify the champion’s qualities as he promised to do so.
Haye dominated for another three rounds, before Ruiz’s corner made the correct decision and pulled him out of the fight. It was the right call as Ruiz was taking one of the heaviest beatings he’s had all career.
What’s next for Haye is a mystery. He has a contractual agreement to give Nikolay Valuev a rematch, but that would be pointless and unnecessary. Everybody wants to see him in the ring with either Klitschko, but they seem occupied with other opponents. There are plenty of options out there, but it’s up to him to make the fights the fans crave, which is to attempt to break the Klitschko stranglehold.
On the undercard, Ajose Olusegan (28-0, 14 KO) successfully defended his Commonwealth light welterweight title for the fourth time against Colin Lynes (33-8, 12 KO) with an eighth-round knockout victory. Olusegan dominated the fight before he landed a body shot on Lynes, who failed to beat the referee’s ten-count. Olusegan’s performance suggested he’s ready for a step-up in class.
Super prospect George Groves (9-0, 7 KO) impressively stopped Charles Adamu (17-5, 12 KO) to win his first belt, the Commonwealth super middleweight title. Groves looks the real deal, becoming the first fighter to ever stop Adamu in his professional career, which is a major achievement when you consider that Adamu lasted the full twelve against Carl Froch. Groves knocked Adamu down once in the first and twice in the fourth, before the fight was stopped in the sixth.
Former top ten junior middleweight Jamie Moore (32-5, 23 KO) was upset by Sergey Khomitski (22-7-1, 9 KO) in his middleweight debut as he failed to come out for the seventh round.