Former IBF and WBA Super cruiserweight king Murat Gassiev continued his campaign in the heavyweight division with a four-round triumph over Michael Wallisch at the Dynamo Volleyball Arena in Moscow on Thursday.

The tank-like Russian, still only 27, has followed his sole conqueror Oleksandr Usyk into boxing’s most lucrative weight class and is hoping for a similar march to a world title shot.

Gassiev (28-1, 21 KOs) was slow out of the blocks in his second excursion at heavyweight before cranking into life in round four. He punished Wallisch with some brutal bodywork – a left hook downstairs causing the visitor’s right glove to touch the canvas – before dropping the German more emphatically with a right hand late in the fourth. The visitor rose, but the bout was waved off soon afterwards following a stiff volley of blows from the Russian. 

Wallisch (22-5, 15 KOs) was brushed aside by Joe Joyce in three rounds last July, but was coming off two stoppage wins. He was viewed as a step up in class from Gassiev’s first bout at heavyweight, a one-round blitz of Nuri Seferi last October.

Gassiev should return to action in the next two to three months, according to promoter Vladimir Hryunov.

Main image: Pavel Kashaev/Alamy/Russian Look.