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Filip Hrgović celebrated his biggest career success so far

Filip Hrgović, the Croatian boxer, these days certainly has reason to celebrate, given his 15th consecutive victory. This 15th consecutive victory, which Hrgović celebrated by defeating the Chinese boxer Zhilei Zhang, can easily be called the victory of his career. At least until now – because it seems his time is yet to come. The match that took place in Sudi Arabia was uncertain until the very end because Zhang managed to bring him to his knees already in the first round.

Filip Hrgović in in the fight of his life
Filip Hrgović in in the fight of his life

However, things got better for the Croatian boxer as the match drew to a close, and the Chinese opponent, although 15 kilograms heavier than Hrgović, gradually lost strength. Hrgović and Zhang fought for the title of IBF Mandatory Challenger for the World Heavyweight Championship. Current title holder Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk, who fought at the same event against Anthony Joshua and won, will be Hrgovic’s opponent in the final fight for the title.

How was the match between Filip Hrgović and Zhilei Zhang

The event itself started at 22:47 when the ring was ready for the fight and the fighters entered it. Hrgović entered the ring to the sounds of the song “Geni kameni” and at 22:50 both fighters were in positions. The fight that was supposed to take place was announced as a spectacle that will consist of 12 rounds.

Already in the first round, a few seconds before the end, Zhang knocked Hrgović down, but he got up very quickly without looking shaken.

The second round ended with Hrgović’s victory, in which he performed aggressively shaking his opponent, but not knocking him to the floor.

In the third round, Zhang gets back on his feet and delivers a heavy blow to our boxer. Hrgović suffered a cut when the Chinese boxer hit him with the head, so the round was stopped to bandage it and check if everything is okay.

The next round was open and it was not possible to say with certainty who was better.

Filip Hrgović
Source: - Dnevnik

In the fifth round, everything looked equal until near the end when the Chinese boxer again dealt a heavy blow to our Filip. Fortunately, the bell rang to stop the fight.

The sixth round did not look good for Filip Hrgović, who was attacked fiercely by Zhang. However, Filip managed to defend himself from several unpleasant blows, even though he looked like he was running out of air.

The next round showed the opponent and the spectators that Hrgović still has strength and can deliver serious blows. The situation continued in the eighth round, when it was clear that the Chinese boxer was getting tired, and our Filip looked like he had “awakened” and was getting better.

The ninth round was briefly interrupted due to a wet surface that needed to be repaired urgently. At this point, the match was still fairly even, but it was noticeable that both boxers were moving a little harder. At the end of the round, Zhang threw a few more dangerous punches.

In the tenth round, Hrgović regains the lead, avoiding the clinch that the now visibly tired Zhang is constantly looking for.

The eleventh round again goes in favor of our boxer, but the Chinese also had a great series of blows. In the end, the Chinese boxer slipped and ended up on the floor. The match was still open, and the twelfth round would decide the winner.

Round number 12 marked the end of the match in which both boxers remained standing. 12 open rounds in which Zhang and Hrgović had some very good moves ended with the decision of the judges who declared Filip Hrgović the winner! Two judges scored the fight 115:112, one 114:113 in favor of the Croatian boxer.

Impressions after the victory

Hrgović by Dragan Matic CROPIX
Source: Dragan Matic / CROPIX

After the fight ended and the announcement was made to the media, the winner commented on the match and the opponent: “I am a warrior, this was for my father who passed away a few months ago. Pero Hrgović, a special man. He and my beautiful wife Marinela were there with me. She was with me in the training camp, I got all my energy from her. It was uncertain, I was losing. At the end of the match, I did my best. The knockdown didn’t hurt me, I lost my balance. Honestly, Zhang surprised me, he’s better than I thought. It was thick.”

After this match, Filip is still undefeated in professional boxing. So far, he entered the ring 15 times and won all 15 times, 12 of them by knockout. He will receive around $350,000 for this fight. Zhang should receive about $250,000.

Your CTC Team, A. M. 

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