Levan Shonia vs. Vepkhia Tchilaia
2007-01-25 : Levan Shonia 156 lbs beat Vepkhia Tchilaia 159 lbs by KO in round 8 of 10
- Location: Cinema Hall Of Rustaveli, Tbilisi, Georgia
Levan Shonia took the vacant UBO International middleweight title with a knockout victory in round eight over countryman Vepkhia Tchilaia at the Cinema Hall Of Rustaveli in Tbilisi, Georgia on the afternoon of January 25. The fight was the only bout featured during a publicity event to hype the January 26 premiere of motion picture Rocky Balboa starring Sylvester Stallone.
Shonia improved his record to 10-2 (6), and Tchilaia fell to 8-4 (5). The fight was full of action, and delighted the crowd at the Cinema Hall. This was the first International title fight in Georgian boxing history, and local newspapers and TV channels were well represented.
Both boxers came out with full of ambitions and desire to win the fight, with several good exchanges and back-and-forth action bringing the crowd to its feet’s. It was a difficult fight to score for the ringside judges, and it looked like the victory could go either way. In round seven, Tchilaia started to tire, and Shonia recognized this immediately and put even more efforts into his attacks. He never let Tchilaia get an opportunity to rest, and had him in serious trouble before the bell acted as saviour.
From that point on, it was clear that Shonia was close to victory. He started fast and furious in round eight, pressuring Tchilaia until the end came towards the end of the round. Shonia could celebrate being the first Georgian boxer to win an international title in his home country, and he enjoyed the admiration of the many fans in attendance to the fullest.
“The fight was a big success, and we are very happy everything went well,” says promoter Mamuka Bukaria. “People were so fascinated by the great fight that we had to remind everybody that there is more boxing tomorrow (today, January 26) when the Rocky movie premieres. We are here to make publicity for “Rocky Balboa”, but of course also to celebrate the first Georgian UBO champion”.
Unlike Rocky Balboa, Shonia and Tchilaia are very real, and the UBO congratulates them both on a fantastic fight, and welcome Shonia as International middleweight champion.