Khalid Yafai v Israel Gonzalez Betting Tips & Predictions
This weekend sees an exciting bout between Khalid Yafai v Israel Gonzales. The British boxing scene is finishing on a real high this year; what’s more, before 2018 is in the books we could very well have another home-based heavyweight world champion with Tyson Fury aiming to dethrone Deontay Wilder in America on December 2. Get a preview of that fight on our site nearer the time.
If Fury does beat The Bronze Bomber, that will mean all versions of the heavyweight title will be safely in the hands of British fighters – Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury. That’s a big ask, given Wilder’s punch power; however, there’s no doubt the fight game is thriving in this country at the minute and the top division is leading the way.
There’s plenty to get through before the end of November however; not wanting to get ahead of ourselves and look beyond some exciting contests, we cast our eye towards this weekend where a stacked card involving some of the UK’s best and brightest takes place against the plush backdrop of the Casino de Monte Carlo, Monaco.
Yafai Takes on Mexican Gonzalez
Let’s look at Khalid Yafai v Israel Gonzalez. Top of the bill features Birmingham’s Yafai who takes on Mexican opponent Gonzalez over 12 rounds for the WBA super flyweight world title. They are little men, but this promises to be a blockbuster decider for a respected belt.
The 29-year-old orthodox boxer, Kal Yafai, may stand at only 5ft 4inches tall; however, what he lacks in height he more than makes up for in ability and punch power. The Englishman carries a professional record of 24 wins against no defeats and no draws.
On the Title Trail
Since making his debut at the Sheffield Arena back in 2012 with a second-round stoppage victory over the well-travelled opponent Delroy Spencer, Yafai has gone on to win a clutch of titles; these include: Commonwealth, IBF Inter-Continental, British and the WBA world title that’s on the line here. Of his perfect 24-fight CV he has won 15 by way of knockout, resulting in a 63% KO average. That shouldn’t be easily overlooked by punters when planning their assault on the bookies.
Yafai was last seen retaining his title courtesy of a seventh-round win over another Mexican opponent in David Carmona at the Save Mart Arena in Fresno back in the spring of this year. The beaten man was dropped to the canvas in the first, fourth and fifth rounds, suffering a nasty looking gash to the forehead in the process. In an eventful match, Yafai was deducted a point for hitting his opponent while he was down but had done more than enough to win the fight with a bit to spare.
Gonzalez a Worthy Challenger
5ft 6inch orthodox Israel Gonzalez doesn’t boast the same perfect record as the man in the opposite corner on fight night, but he can take plenty of heart from past efforts and will make the journey confident he has what it takes to do something the 24 men before him couldn’t manage and actually defeat Yafai. Gonzalez, fighting out of his Los Cabos base, has lost two of 25 starts, with one of those negatives coming on the scorecards, the other an inside the distance defeat.
The first came over six rounds when dropping a decision to Argi Cortes back in April 2016; however, that slight blip wasn’t enough to knock the improving fighter off his stride. He bounced back to record each of his next eight, before eventually running in to Jerwin Ancajas at the Bank of America Center with an IBF world title on the line.
It was to prove a failed gamble with Gonzalez beaten inside 10 rounds and taking a bit of a hammering along the way. He was on his back as early as round one and touched down again twice in round 10, before being pulled by referee Rafael Ramos with 1.50 on the clock. That defeat meant Gonzalez was, again, forced onto the comeback trail and he goes having won each of his last two outings since that loss to Ancajas.
The first of those was a first round TKO cheer over Jairo Gutierrez, a man with a 6-10-0 record. He also got the job done next time in double-quick time, battering Daniel Arturo Vega into submission before the end of the second. Impressive, at first glance, but the truth remains he comes into a world title fight having boxed less than three complete rounds since February. That’s not ideal and will put plenty off a shot on the upset.
Englishman Priced as Favourite
The form of both fighters has led bookmakers to price Yafai as hot favourite for this fight; those looking to back the Brit will have to make do with 1/33 as the market best price. Very tight but most of the industry make the same bet 1/50. We can’t get involved in either, and we’re not interested in the draw at 33/1 (William Hill), or a Gonzalez win at 12/1 (Bet365).
We really aren’t impressed with the underdog and that means it’s now a choice between a KO win or points win for Yafai. The points win is sure to be popular; however, with the jolly winning his last fight inside the distance, and his opponent suffering TKO loss already this year, a punt on the KO/TKO seems like the shrewd play. Our bet is back Yafai to defend his title without the help of the scoring judges sat at ringside.
As well as the main event, there’s also an interesting undercard booked for the night and we’re able to find a couple of bets worth having to help boost your returns and maybe pave the way for a decent accumulator.
Denis Lebedev v Mike Wilson is a cracker and the former is betting favourite. He deserves to be and it’s worth knowing he has won 68% of his fights by KO. That run includes a third-round TKO last time out and the Russian’s power is sure to have a say again in this one.
Opponent Mike Wilson is undefeated from 19 previous goes; however, he’s never shared a ring with a man of Lebedev’s ability and will struggle when the bout enters the middle rounds. This is a real jump up in class for Wilson and we’re backing the Russian to win by KO/TKO. A fantastic fight in store there.
Back the Bug
Londoner Frank Buglioni (22-3-1) meets China’s Fanlong Meng, a man travelling with a 13-0-0 record. However, again, it’s an unbeaten run we expect to come to a halt in Monaco. Buglioni has seen it all during his time in the game and has campaigned at the better standard so far. That will make all the difference and we’re taking him to get back on track with an important victory.
Wise Guy isn’t the cutest boxer, but he’s rugged, hard working and will push his opponent back from the first bell. When bringing his power shots into play it’ll be a matter of time before he gets Meng out of there. A win here would set up a big year for Team Buglioni but he can’t afford to look beyond an ambitious Fanlong who has ideas of his own about moving on to bigger and betting fights.
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