Introducing Otabek Kholmatov: The ‘Terror’ at 126lbs
The featherweight division is full of many potential great fights, with Leigh Wood, Luis Alberto Lopez and Brandon Figueroa. The 126lbs division has a new star, heavy-handed Uzbekistan fighter Otabek Kholmatov. At Big Fight Weekend, we wanted to introduce you to the “terror” at 126lbs.
Introducing the Real Otabek Kholmatov
Absolutely Brutal From Otabek Kholmatov Tonight Who Becomes The First Man To Defeat Thomas Patrick Ward 👀 🇺🇿
— Eat Sleep Boxing Repeat (@ESBRBoxing) March 4, 2023
Who is Otabek Kholmatov and Career Recapped
Kholmatov is a southpaw fighter born in Uzbekistan and now residing in Hollywood, Florida. The featherweight fighter made his professional debut on August 13, 2021. He began his pro journey with a one-round demolition of Marcello Williams. This gave us a brief insight into his power and ability to finish his opponents.
At the time of writing, Kholmatov is 11-0 with ten wins via knockout. Throughout his career thus far, he has shown his power and the spite present within every punch he throws. During his fight with Andranik Grigorian, the Uzbekistan fighter showcased his powerful jab, which snapped back his opponent’s head on numerous occasions. Grigorian was undoubtedly his toughest opponent thus far, being the only man to take Kholmatov the distance, with the Uzbek fighter winning on the judge’s scorecards, 118-110 and 119-109 x2.
In other fights, Kholmatov has destroyed his opponents with ferocious combinations. His most recent fight against unbeaten Thomas Patrick Ward saw the rising star of the 126lbs division defeat his Irish opponent, brutally breaking him down with powerful combinations, forcing Ward’s corner to throw in the towel during round 5.
The Ability Of Kholmatov
There is no doubt – that Kholmatov is fast making a name for himself in the featherweight division, racing to 11-0. His power is undoubtedly one of his best assets. He has also shown throughout his eleven-fight career how effective he is at throwing his jab but following up with a heavy hook, and on occasions, a double hook has followed.
The Florida-based Uzbek has shown he can take a punch and appears extremely strong throughout his fights, often cranking up the pressure on his opponents. Kholmatov walks through opposition in a terminator-like way.
What’s Next For Kholmatov?
Despite being named as the mandatory to face Leigh Wood for his WBA featherweight title, the WBA have “approved a special permit requested by Matchroom Boxing for featherweight champ Leigh Wood to fight Josh Warrington.” Depending on the result of Wood vs. Warrington, Kholmatov remains a possible future opponent for “Leigh-thal.”
While the Wood-Warrington bout is taking place, the Uzbek fighter – has the option to face an opponent approved by the championship committee. Kholmatov will fancy his chances against anyone in the division with the demolition job he did on Ward – it feels like we will be seeing a lot more of Otabek Kholmatov.