Subriel Matias collapses and stops Batyr Jukembayev in eight rounds
CARSON, Calif .– Subriel Matias entered the title contention.
The ruthless Puerto Rican hitter scored the biggest victory of his career, forcing Kazakhstani Batyrzhan Jukembayev to give up on his stool after eight brutal rounds in their IBF junior welterweight title eliminator. Matias scored a knockdown in the fourth round and withstood several swing changes to force the stoppage between the eighth and nine rounds on Saturday night at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, Calif.
The action rarely strayed from the center of the ring, with the pair of junior welterweight punchers fighting up close. Matias was trying to set up his right hand but got too involved in his comeback as Jukembayev cracked the Boricua with a straight right hand. Matias took the shot well, but was overwhelmed and punched inside.
Jukembayev connected with a scorching right hook to start the third round. Matias looked to block but couldn’t pull his left hook past Jukembayev’s manuel defense. The Puerto Rican contender finally found his opening late in the round, landing a right hand and letting go of his hands in the dying seconds.
The end-of-round streak proved to be a change of momentum for Matias who attacked in the fourth round. Jukembayev’s guard was just low enough for Matias to crack him with a right hand and left hook to provide the only knockdown of the fight. Jukembayev not only beat the count, but rallied to stun Matias at the end of the round to grab the attention of the eager crowd.
Jukembayev sought to turn the tide in his favor in the fifth round while battling a cut to the skull, only for Matias to regain control. A left hook left Jukembayev briefly stunned and cornered halfway through the round. The Kazakh left-hander came back to land a right hook on the floor, only for Matias to come back in force and land with his right hand.
Matias rocked Jukembayev with a left hook at the end of a high octane sixth round. Jukembayev slowed down as Matias continued to pick up speed, delivering a heavy right hand finish to the sleeve.
Matias was in a groove for much of the seventh round, sensing something big. It would come, only in the wrong direction as Jukembayev rallied to smack a right hook on Matias chin. Jukembayev moved to call, with Matias shaking the shot to land a right hand as the two traded for the remainder of the round.
The pivotal moment provided Jukembayev with a spark at the start of the seventh inning. Matias still had a lot of fighting in him, soaking up the finish to move forward with right hands up and left hooks on the body. Matias continued to push the action into the eighth round, landing a steady stream of powerful punches.
This proved too difficult for Jukembayev, as his corner umpire informed umpire Ray Corona that he was unable to continue. The heartbreaking moment leaves Jukembayev with his first loss as he drops to 18-1 (14KOs).
Matias scores his second consecutive high-level knockout on Showtime, as he improves to 17-1 (17KOs). The prolific knockout artist is now in a position to fight for the IBF junior welterweight title held by undisputed champion Josh Taylor, although he will have to wait for another eliminator between Jeremias Ponce and Lewis Ritson.
Matias-Jukembayev was the mainstay of a Showtime triple-header. Heading the show, Nordine Oubaali (17-0, 12KO) defends his WBC bantamweight title against former four-division champion Nonito Donaire (40-6, 26KO).
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox