Knock out win by Samoan Champion Vaitele Soi

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Samoan cruiserweight champion Vaitele Soi returned home this week after winning the Last Man Standing an all professional 8 man knockout tournament in Auckland on Saturday, walking away with the $10,000 prize money

Soi also laid claim to beating one of New Zealands finest fighters kickboxing legend Shane Chopper Chapman in the final as reported on NZFighter website.

Starting off by working Chapman’s body into a first-round introduction to the canvas, Soi caught fire in the second, hitting upstairs and down, and putting Chapman back on the ground. Chopper wasn’t liable to take any of this lying down, and he came back with an overhand right that set the Samoan champion’s teeth a-rattling.

Standing strong in the face of some brutal assaults, Soi broke the mold and punched Chapman into the ropes with the referee stopping the fight in the third round.

Draw from the hat saw Soi going toe to toe with southpaw Francis Pratsch in one of the quarter finals. Pratsch dominated both first and second rounds landing a number of good punches until Soi got his rhythm in the third round, knocking out Pratsch to advance to the semifinals.

The match up saw Soi going up against former World Boxing Organisation (WBO) African title holder Mohamed Azzaoui. The experienced Azzaoui originally from Algeria with thirty three professional bouts laid claim to beating a string of Samoan contenders Junior Pati, Bob Gasio, Seiaute Mailata, Amosa Zinc, Lighting Lupe, Alapati Kitiona and Martin Opetaia over the years.

Soi took the fight to Azzaoui, winning by a split decision in the toughest of the two semi finals.

The 2010 Last Man Standing champion Shane Chopper Chapman won his earlier bouts with ease against Samoan boxers Wilhem Schwalger in the quarterfinal and last years finalist Monty Filimaea Fauea in the semifinal. Chopper has never been stopped and also laid claim to beating former Samoan boxing champions Niusila Seiuli and Fale Siaoloa.

Soi provided the only knock outs of the 2011 Last Man Standing tournament taking his unblemished professional record to seventeen, winning twelve by KO.

According to NZFighter, Soi looks to be ripe for a world-class title.

Vaiteles win is affirmations that with the adequate resources to prepare and get our boxers to participate in big international fights, Samoa can deliver boxing world champions, said Pau Fereti Puni of Event Polynesia, the local company that is leading the resurgence of professional boxing in Samoa and development of local boxers.

The win should also silenced local critics about the legitimacy of the Soi verses Azzaoui fight that was promoted by Event Polynesia to take place in Samoa in September 2009. A replacement opponent was called in at the last minute when Azzaoui was declared unwell a few days before the fight.

Currently in Samoa to visit his family is another Samoan KO specialist Leti Leti. Event Polynesia, Letis co-management, has confirmed that there is a possibility of Leti fighting on the Samoa Independence Pro Am Fights on Tuesday 31st May at Faleata Gym 1.

The upcoming boxing fixture will feature the sixteen local professional boxers signed up last month by Event Polynesia.

PHOTO (L-R) Vaitele Soi with members of his management Pau Fereti Puni, Vaiolo Lapa Leatioo, Tuilagi Saipele Esera and Savea Al Harrington Lavea.

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