Mikhailovich's brutal KO win sparks talk of move into top ranks

Source: 1News

Kiwi boxer Andrei Mikhailovich is on the verge of breaking into the top 15 rankings of the middleweight division after posting another impressive knockout win on Wednesday night.

Mikhailovich earned a third-round TKO win over Venezuela's Ernesto Espana on the undercard of the Huni v Goodall event in Queensland to make it five-straight knockout wins in the last five bouts of his 18-0 career.

The Russian-born Kiwi stunned Espana on the ropes before finishing him with a powerful right, earning him the IBF Pan Pacific title and WBO Global belt.

"As soon as I relaxed and just backed myself – well, I always back myself – but you saw what happened, he wobbled and then there was, boom, kabam, roadrunner s..t,” he told the media after the fight," Mikhailovich said.

"This is the hammer [his right hand] and this is the left hook from hell, so you got two bombs coming in and you haven’t seen the uppercut from hell."

Andrei Mikhailovich lands a shot against Ernesto Espana.

The win is believed to be enough to get the 24-year-old into the top 15 ranks of the middleweights and he wasted no time in calling out who he wanted next to continue his climb - Australian veteran Michael Zerafa, who is ranked No.2 with the IBF, No.5 by the WBA and No.11 at the WBO.

"I want to fight who people believe are the best. I believe I’m the best, but if Zerafa’s in, let’s go man, anytime, any day, I’m ready for that,” Mikhailovich said.

“If we can have a great showdown with Zerafa, I think there’s a great fight and I think that’s like a super fight. You know, I’m the young gun coming up, and he’s like the seasoned vet and like there’s so many variables to that fight. So we need to make that."

Mikhailovich is next scheduled to fight on the undercard of the Fight for Life charity event against fellow Kiwi Frances Waitai in Auckland next month with Waitai coming off a majority points decision loss to Australian Jack Gipp at the same Brisbane event on Wednesday.

In the main event, Australian heavyweight Justis Huni dug deep for a unanimous points decision win after 10 rounds against countryman Joseph Goodall.