Saturday night at the Sport Hall Energia in Narva, Estonia, rising and undefeated Russian female star Elena Gradinar picked up her first professional title, the IBF Inter-Continental Female Featherweight Championship, with a unanimous decision over Canadian former WBC world champion Olivia Gerula.
Gradinar (9-0, 2 KOs) dominated the more experienced Gerula over the 10-round distance, winning by scores of 99-91, 98-92 and 99-91.
“I am very happy with the win and my IBF belt,” said Gradinar, post-fight. “I want to fight Jennifer Han for the IBF world title. I want to do my part in lifting women’s boxing to the next level and fight the best.”
Her co-promoter, Dmitriy Salita (along with Alexander Nevsky Promotion Group), has made a firm commitment to women’s boxing by signing several current and upcoming female superstars including world champions Claressa Shields and Christina Hammer, as well as top prospects Franchon Crews Dezurn, Elena Savelyeva and Gradinar.
Salita says this is just the start of a terrific 2018 for Gradinar. “With the win Elena has cemented herself as one of the best female featherweights in the world. This is going to be a big year for Elena and women’s boxing.”