Author: Daxx Khan

Spence Dominates Garcia to Retain IBF Welterweight title

Saturday night at the AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas Errol Spence Jr took on Mikey Garcia in defense of his IBF welterweight title, in what was going to be one of the most anticipated fights of 2019. The challenger Garcia after capturing gold in his fourth weight division in 2018 called out Spence in a fight for “Greatness” and top position on boxing’s “pound for Pound” list.  As a true champion Spence would accept the challenge and after both fighters took care of other business, signed the contract to make it happen.

Once the bell rang with forty plus thousand fans in attendance, boxing waited on the edge of their seats to see if Garcia could do what no one has been able to until that point defeat “Errol Spence”.

It started with a feel out first round, in the second Garcia pushed the action winning it on many cards of those watching and scoring unofficially. The remainder of the bout would be all Errol Spence Jr who controlled the distance and pace with his long accurate jab. When the bout was over judges in attendance Alex Levin and Nelson Vazquez scored it 120-108 while Glenn Feldman 120-107 all in favor of the champion Errol Spence Jr.

This was the first loss in what’s already “Hall of fame” worthy career of Mikey Garcia who now stands at 39-1 (30) and will most likely move back to lightweight where he holds the WBC and IBF division titles. This was the third defense of Spence’s IBF title and should set up a unification bout with one of the divisions other belt holders.

In the co-main event former WBC Super Middleweight title holder David Benavidez improved to 21-0 (18) with a two round destruction over world ranked J’Leon Love who now stands at 24-3-1 (13).

Making his US debut former WBC bantamweight title holder Luis Nery improved to 29-0 (23) when he batter former IBF Super Flyweight title holder McJoe Arroyo into submission. The hard hitting Nery dropped Arroyo four times before forcing the former belt holder to stay on his stool for the start of round five. With the loss Arroyo drops to 18-3 (8).

In Undercard action

Heavyweights- Chris Arreola 38-5-1 (33) def. Jean Pierre Augustin 17-1-1 (12) via TKO 3.

Heavyweights- Charles Martin 26-2-1 (23) def. Gregory Corbin 15-1 (9) via DQ 8. LOW BLOWS

Junior Welterweights- Lindolfo Delgado 9-0 (9) def. James Roach 5-2 (5) via KO 1

Bantamweights- Jesse Rodriguez 9-0 (5) def. Rauf Aghayev 26-7 (11) via TKO 3.

Junior Featherweights- Fernando Garcia 12-0 (7) def. Marlon Olea 14-5 (12) via KO 5.

Welterweights- Amon Rashidi 6-0 (4) def. Gabriel Gutierrez 5-8 (3) via TKO 6.

Junior Middleweights- Thomas Hill 8-2 (1) def. Limberth Ponce 17-4 (10) via SD 6.

Bantamweights- Aaron Morales 6-0 (3) def. Fernando Robles 2-1 via UD 6.

Featherweights- Luis Coria 11-2 (6) def. Omar Garcia 6-8 (1) via TKO 2.

Junior Lightweights- Jose Valenzuela 3-0 def. Christian Velez 1-2 (1) via TKO.

Super Middleweights- Burley Brooks 1-0 (1) def. Randy Mast 1-1 via TKO 1.

Cruiserweights- Marsellos Wilder 4-1 (3) def. Mark Sanchez 0-3 via TKO 1.

Cruiserweights- Adrian Taylor 9-1 (4 ) def. William Deets 7-13 (3) via UD 4.

Junior Bantamweights- Robert Rodriguez 3-0 def. Fernando Ibarra 0-1 via UD 4.

 

USA Boxing Remembers the 1980 Plane Crash

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (March 14, 2019) — On March 14, 1980, the sport of amateur boxing and the world tragically lost 22 members to a plane crash near Warsaw, Poland. The fourteen boxers and eight staff members aboard the flight, which killed a total of 77 people, were en route to an international event in Poland at the time of the crash.

The team was traveling from New York to Warsaw to compete in two dual events in Cracow and Katowice when the Polish IL-62 jetliner went down just a half a mile from Warsaw’s Okecie Airport.

 Today marks the 39th anniversary of the tragic accident and USA Boxing would like to acknowledge those team members and the sacrifice they made for their country and the love of the sport. Those lost on March 14, 1980 will never be forgotten.

 USA Boxing Team Members and Staff Lost in the 1980 Plane Crash

 KELVIN D. ANDERSON

ELLIOT CHAVIS

GARY TYRONE CLAYTON

WALTER HARRIS

BYRON LINDSAY

ANDRE MCCOY

PAUL PALOMINO

BYRON PAYTON

GEORGE PIMENTAL

CHUCK ROBINSON

DAVID RODRIGUEZ

LEMUEL STEEPLES

JEROME STEWART

COL. BERNARD CALLAHAN

THOMAS “SARGE” JOHNSON

JOSEPH BLAND

JOHN RADISON

JUNIOR ROBLES

LONNIE YOUNG

DELORES WESSON

DR. RAY WESSON

STEVE SMIGIEL

LERENA: “I WAKE UP AND THINK OF ARTUR MANN”

Kevin Lerena (21-1, 9 KOs) says he is fully focused on Artur Mann (15-0, 8 KOs) as ‘The KO Kid’ puts his IBO World Cruiserweight title on the line against the German challenger on Saturday at the Emperors Palace in Johannesburg.

Lerena claimed the IBO strap with a split decision over Youri Kayembre Kalenga in September 2017, before successfully defending his belt with unanimous points wins against Dmytro Kucher and Roman Golovashchenko.

Heading into his third defence, the 26 year-old insists he is leaving nothing to chance, and admits he has even been waking up thinking about his opponent.

“I know everybody is talking about Oleksandr Usyk moving up to heavyweight, and what’s going to happen to his belts, but to be honest, I don’t really care,” said Lerena. “My only focus is this fight. I wake up and think of Artur Mann.

“I know I need to take care of business against him. He’s 15-0, he’s coming off a very credible record, and he has my full attention. This is a big fight for me. Yes, on paper, I’ve had big fights before, Kalenga, Kucher, Golovashchenko, Nielsen, but these are in the past, and I need to focus on what’s in front of me.

“I’m war ready! I know he’s going to bring it, and I’m going to bring it too. I’ve never been a guy to cherry pick opponents. I want tough fights because I believe I elevate myself the harder the fight, and I enjoy the challenge.”

Lerena’s coach Peter Smith, of Smith’s Gym, echoes his fighter’s sentiments, and states they will not be taking the Hannover-boxer lightly.

“This is a serious fight for us,” he says. “We’re not overlooking Artur Mann in anyway. Artur is a serious opponent with a great team behind him. We’re taking this fight very seriously, and looking forward to a great battle!”

Lerena-Mann is a co-promotion between Team Sauerland and South Africa’s premier promoter Golden Gloves, led by Rodney Berman, who describes Saturday’s match-up as one of the country’s ‘biggest cruiserweight fights ever’.

“This has got to be one of the biggest cruiserweight fights ever in South Africa,” said Berman. “It’s common knowledge that Usyk is going to be moving up, so now every other cruiserweight is fighting for their place in the sun, and Kevin will be the only remaining World Champion when he gives up the belts.”

German boxing fans can watch all the action from the Emperors Palace live on Sport1, with Timo Schwarzkopf and Xhek Paskali fighting on the undercard.

Undefeated junior welterweight prospect Kendo Castaneda to be showcased at home

LAS VEGAS (March 14, 2019) — Undefeated junior welterweight prospect Kendo Castaneda will be showcased at home Thursday, March 28, when he puts his unblemished record on the line against his dangerous Dominican opponent, Eudy “AK47” Bernado, in the 10-round main event at Cowboy Dance Hall in San Antonio, Texas.

Castaneda vs. Bernardo, co-promoted by Roy Jones Jr. (RJJ) Boxing Promotions and Leija Battah Promotions, will headline a card to be streamed live on UFC FIGHT PASS, starting at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT. The show is the fourth under a new agreement between Castaneda’s promoter, RJJ Boxing, and FIGHT PASS, to live stream up to 72 professional boxing events over the next three years.

The 25-year-old Castaneda (15-0, 7 KOs) is coming off his most impressive performance this past December in San Antonio, in which he won a lop-sided 10-round unanimous decision (100-90, 99-91, 98-92) over previously undefeated Gilbert Venegas, Jr. (10-0) to capture the vacant North American Boxing Association (NABA) super lightweight title. Castaneda is ranked No. 14 in the world by the World Boxing Association (WBA).

A former Dominican Republic lightweights champion, Bernardo (24-3, 18 KOs) is a dangerous puncher, evident by his 18 knockouts in 24 victories during his 9 ½-year professional career.

The co-featured event is another special RJJ Boxing on UFC Fight Pass match-up between unbeaten Baltimore lightweight Xavier Wilson (9-0-1, 1 KO) and once-defeated, hard-hitting John Arellano (9-1, 9 KOs), fighting out of Conroe, Texas, in an eight-rounder.

Opening the FIGHT PASS segment of the card is a welterweight class featuring Houston’s undefeated prospect Jerrico “Hands of Stone” Walton (11-0, 7 KOs) versus upset-minded Oregonian, Sean “Beast of War” Gee (4-9).

Also fighting on the undercard in a pair six-round, intra-state rivalry bouts between unbeaten San Antonio lightweight Joseph “Mongoose” Rodriguez (14-0-1, 2 KOs) and Darryl Hayes (6-12, 1 KO), of Houston, along with Austin, TX knockout artist Alexis Camacho (21-6, 19 KOs) versus Houston junior middleweight Rich “The Ruler” Graham(6-21-4).

All fights and fighters are subject to change.

San Antonio welterweight Daniel Baiz (13-1, 5 KOs) vs. fellow Texan Joe Sambrano (4-12-1, 2 KOs) in a six-round fight, plus two four-rounders as San Antonio super middleweight Steve Ramos (4-1, 2 KOs) faces (Bryan, TX) Adam “AD” Ealoms.(3-16-3, 1 KO), and San Antonio junior featherweight Henry “World Star” Arredondo (2-0) vs. TBA.

USA Boxing Announces Seven New Board of Directors Members

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (March 12, 2019) — USA Boxing announced today the seven new board of director members, as well as Cam Awesome and Dick Hoffmann being reappointed as Athlete Representative Director and Independent Director, respectively. The new members will join the board effective March 31, 2019.

The Affiliate Member Director, Athlete Representative Directors, and the Local Boxing Committee (LBC) Director were vetted and nominated by USA Boxing’s Nominating and Governance Committee and elected by USA Boxing membership following USA Boxing’s bylaws.

USA Boxing utilized a Board of Director search firm to conduct a nation-wide search for Independent Director Candidates. Ten candidates were recommended to USA Boxing Nominating and Governance Committee who in turn vetted and selected four Independent Directors who they believe will complement and bolster USA Boxing’s board of directors. The Independent Directors have prior experience with amateur Olympic-style boxing and their training, knowledge and experiences outside of boxing will strengthen the board of directors.

The new board member designations are as follows:

Affiliated Member Director:

Eric Buller-Buller currently serves as the President of the National Collegiate Boxing Association, as well as works as the Director of the Harry T. Wilks Leadership Institute at Miami University in Miami, Ohio. Buller holds a B.S. in Soviet Foreign Affairs from the United States Military Academy, a M.Ed. in Higher Education Leadership from the College of William and Mary, as well as an Ed.D in Higher Education Administration from the University of Kansas.

Local Boxing Committee (LBC) Director:

Patrick Butler-Butler has been a District Court Judge in Colorado since 2009, and prior to that practiced law from 1986-2009, following his graduation from Gonzaga University with a law degree. He has been a USA Boxing official since 2013. Judge Butler was voted into this position by LBC Presidents, and hopes to help grow, sustain and improve USA Boxing on the local, national and international levels.

Athlete Representative Director:

Brian Ceballo – Ceballo was a long-time member of USA Boxing’s High Performance team prior to going on to the professional ranks in 2018. Ceballo represented Team USA at numerous international tournaments throughout his 206-13 amateur career, including the 2015 Pan American Games and 2015 World Series of Boxing. Ceballo will work alongside Awesome and Franchon Crews to represent the athlete perspective on the Board of Directors. He currently serves as an Athlete Representative on the Metropolitan LBC Board of Directors.

Independent Director:

Héctor Colón – Colón serves as the President and CEO of Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan. Prior to that, he spent six years as Executive Director of the Department of Health and Human Services of Milwaukee County. Colón was a member of the U.S. national boxing team for seven years. He won seven national titles and competed in the 1992 Olympic trials, losing to Jessie Briseno whom he knocked out in the first round for the U.S. welterweight championship in 1993. Colón served as the boxing and mixed martial arts commissioner for the state of Wisconsin from 2009 to 2011. He holds both a B.S. and M.S. in Occupational Therapy from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Independent Director:

Tyson Lee– the current President and CEO of Veteran Industries graduated with a BS degree in engineering and foreign languages from the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY where he made the Regimental All Star Boxing Team for three years. As a captain in the Army, he also won three state amateur titles while stationed in Hawaii. His professional military background includes completing U.S. Army schools such as Airborne, Jumpmaster, and Ranger, also serving as a Company Commander in the 25th Infantry Division (Light). He now resides in Spanish Fort, Alabama.

Independent Director:

Chris Trombetta-a former U.S. Army Infantry Captain, Trombetta currently serves as the Senior Vice President of Strategy & Talent for Red Bull North America. Prior, Trombetta worked for Bain & Company, a leading global management consulting firm, focused on consumer products and media & entertainment clients. He graduated with highest honors from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a B.S. in Human Factors Engineering and earned his MBA from Harvard Business School.

Independent Director:

Sherry Wulkan-Dr. Wulkan brings ringside physician experience to the board of directors, as the SUNY Stony Brook graduate has been around sports for many years. She is currently the Medical Director of the Combative Sports Consulting Services, as well as served as a consultant for numerous other organizations such as the NYU Langone Health, Florida State Athletic Commission, U.S. Marine Corps Combat Sports Program, and Atlantic Sports Health.

THUNDER’ MANN CONFIDENT OF CLAIMING WORLD GLORY

Artur ‘Thunder’ Mann (15-0, 8 KOs) has arrived in South Africa ready to realise his World title dream as he challenges Kevin Lerena (21-1, 9 KOs) for the IBO Cruiserweight crown on Saturday at the Emperors Palace in Johannesburg.

The 28 year-old Hannover-hotshot is full of confidence as he enters his first World title contest following convincing wins over teak-tough Russian Alexey Zubov and the previously undefeated Alexander Peil in his last two bouts.

Having added legendary Cuban coach Pedro Diaz to his training team, Mann believes everything is in place for a memorable victory as he goes behind enemy lines in an attempt to dethrone the Johannesburg-native.

“First of all, I would like to thank my promoter Team Sauerland, and Golden Gloves, for this great opportunity,” said Mann. “My dream has always been to box for World titles, but I never thought it would happen so quickly.

“I’m excited and extremely motivated to challenge Kevin Lerena for the IBO belt here in South Africa. I know Lerena is a tough opponent, but there are no easy fights at this level, and I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t think I could win.

“Lerena is a World Champion and deserves the utmost respect. He’s currently among the top five cruiserweights in the world, a position you have to earn. However, I believe I’m the more complete fighter, and I will give everything in the ring to prove I’m the better man, and to bring the belt back to Germany.”

On the addition of Diaz, whose current stable includes former unified featherweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux, IBF Super Lightweight King Ivan Baranchyk and fast-rising heavyweight star Filip Hrgovic, Mann states:

“Pedro works meticulously. With him, a lot of the emphasis is placed on our physical fitness and getting the right technique, but above all, it’s on the tactics. He analyses each of his fighters and their opponents in great detail, and that amount of detail can make all the difference at World level.”

The IBO World Cruiserweight title showdown between Kevin Lerena and Artur Mann is a co-promotion between Team Sauerland and Golden Gloves. German boxing fans can watch all the action from the Emperors Palace live on Sport1.

BIVOL OUTPOINTS HARD HITTING SMITH JR. IN TITLE FIGHT

 

Russian, WBA World Light Heavyweight champion, DMITRY BIVOL (now 16-0 11KO’s) looked sharp in his fifth title defense against tough, union laborer, and Long Island’s own JOE SMITH JR. (24-3 20KO’s). Smith Jr. took the champion the full 12-rounds but the champion worked his way to a unanimous decision victory (118-110, 119-109 (x2)).

Bivol, known for his accuracy and multiple punch combos displayed tremendous poise and skill against the hard-punching Smith Jr at the Turning Stone Resort Casino.  Bivol fought a measured fight and kept his distance from the devastating right hand and left hook of Smith Jr..  The bout was filled with drama, even though Bivol maintained a strong lead on the scorecards.   In the 7th round, Bivol landed a clean shot that wobbled Smith Jr., however Smith Jr. refused to fall as he displayed a granite chin multiple times over the 12-rounds.

In the final seconds of the 10th round, Smith Jr. finally landed a flush overhand right.  The punch buckled the knees of Bivol, creating a raucous roar from the Joe Smith Jr. crowd. The bell saved Bivol who gamely held the ropes and wobbled to his corner on unsteady legs.  Smith Jr. who was seconds away from a dramatic world championship KO victory, came out looking for the knockout in the 11th round, hoping to replicate the blast in round 10 and erase the scorecards with one more punch. Bivol bravely and smartly weathered the storm, and even went on the attack in the final 20 seconds of round 12, of which Smith Jr. gritted out to remain on his feet.

“It was not an easy fight” said Bivol after the fight. Bivol acknowldeged the heavy hands of Smith Jr., “Smith had a big heart, and a strong hands.  I caught a right hand on the right side, and I lost my balance a little.”

Star Boxing CEO JOE DEGUARDIA had this to say about Saturday’s fights, “it was a very thrilling night of action highlighted by an exciting main event” (Bivol vs Smith Jr).   “I congratulate Bivol and his team and I am proud of Joe, as he showed his heart, determination and shear grit.  He is not only the hardest punching light-heavyweight, but perhaps the hardest one punch fighter in the sport today.  I know fans will certainly want to see Joe in action again.  He is a very pleasing fighter that certainly fascinates boxing fans enamored with his ability to end a fight with one blast.”

In a 6-round lightweight bout, amateur standout, and multiple time national champion, OTHA JONES III (now 1-0) took on GIORGI “GOGA” GELASHVILI (now 5-2 3KO’s). The two waged war from the opening bell, Jones showing great speed in both his hands and feet, while Gelashvili did not back down, settling in after the first two rounds. After a Jones knockdown in the 3rd round, Gelashvili began finding range, but it was too late as Otha Jones took home the victory in his pro-debut by unanimous decision (59-54, 58-55 (x2)).

Dmitry Bivol vs. Joe Smith Jr. Scouting Report

Verona, New York:On Saturday night, WBA Light Heavyweight World Champion Dmitry Bivol (15-0, 11 KOs), the young and crafty Russian, looks to keep momentum alive as he battles the big power-puncher Joe Smith, Jr. (24-2, 20 KOs) in Smith’s backyard at Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, NY and streaming live on DAZN. The scouting report for this exciting match-up is below:
Category
Dmitry Bivol
Joe Smith Jr.
Age
28
29
Record
15-0-0 (11 KOs)
24-2-0 (20 KOs)
Strength
Dmitry is incredibly elusive in the ring, he has a granite chin and solid power in his shots. He gained a vast amount of experience in his recent title defense over former champion Jean Pascal.
Joe Smith has incredible heart and an iron chin. He has knockout power in both hands and has earned stoppage wins over former champion Bernard Hopkins and Andrzej Fonfara.
Weakness
Bivol is coming into this match lacking the professional experience that his opponent possesses.
Smith has been inactive as of late, only competing twice in the previous two years.
Experience
Although he lacks the professional experience in comparison to his opponent, he is establishing himself as a force in the light heavyweight division.
Smith has been fighting at the professional level for about 10 years, while also earning notable wins along the way.
Power
Bivol has a powerful jab and vicious right hand. He is guilty in handing the always-durable Sullivan Barrera his first stoppage loss just one year ago.
His power may be his biggest strength, he has heavy hands and throws with bad intentions. He handed the future hall-of-famer Bernard Hopkins his only career stoppage loss in 2016 when he knocked Hopkins out of the ring.
Speed
The champion possesses possibly the fastest hands at 175-pounds. He’s quick with the jab and even quicker with his combinations.
The challenger maintains a steady pace throughout the fight. He saves his energy for the finish in which he does a good job of turning it up a notch.
Endurance
He proved in his last two outings that he can handle going a full 12-rounds: defeating the always-crafty Isaac Chilemba and former champion Jean Pascal.
Although he has never been pushed for 12-rounds, he proved his toughness and grit when he went 10-rounds with Sullivan Barrera despite a broken jaw.
Accuracy
Dmitry has a pinpoint accurate jab that he follows-up with rigorous combinations to the head and body.
Smith’s accuracy isn’t on par with his opponent. However, if he lands one clean shot then the night can come to an early end.
Defense
Bivol is very elusive in the ring, which causes major problems for his opponents in getting off effective shots.
Smith is an offensive-minded fighter; there is no feeling out process in the ring with him. He presses the action from start to finish in overwhelming fashion.
Chin
It is safe to say that the champion’s chin is more than durable. He took some big shots in his previous bout with Jean Pascal but was able to execute his game plan in a hard-fought win.
Although he was stopped once in 2010, Smith has since flipped the script completely on any doubt regarding his chin. He put on a courageous effort with Sullivan Barrera in 2017 after suffering a broken jaw in the second round.
Style
Dmitry is a very busy and aggressive fighter in the ring. He’s constantly throwing his opponents off balance with his movements and continuously unleashes combinations throughout the fight.
Joe fights with confidence and believes he can go toe-to-toe with anybody in the division. He likes to press the action as soon as the bell rings because he can end the fight with just one shot.
Intangibles
Credit to the champion who will be competing for the 8th time in just two years. He is very active and has fully embraced the role as a young titleholder in a very talent-stacked division. In his most recent title-defense, he was able to withstand the physical and aggressive pressure that Jean Pascal is famous for. Similar to Pascal, Joe Smith delivers the same power and aggressiveness only with more torque in his shots. Any lingering questions regarding the champion’s chin will be answered in this bout.
Joe Smith put himself on the map back in 2016 when he embraced the underdog role against former title challenger Andrzej Fonfara; a fight in which he won via a first round TKO. Nearly three years down the road, he finds himself embracing the underdog role again, this time in his backyard and with the WBA Light Heavyweight title at stake. Joe is no stranger to spoiling parties, he spoiled the retirement party of future hall-of-famer Bernard Hopkins just two years ago and plans on doing the same against a fighter who many refer to as the future of the division.
Crowd Support
Although he earned the biggest win of his young career in his last outing with former champion Jean Pascal, it may not be enough to earn him the significant crowd support considering he is fighting in Smith’s home state.
Smith is a finisher and is also a native of New York, most of the crowd will be in his corner.
The Match-up
1.       Will Joe Smith’s inactivity show in this fight?
2.       Will Dmitry be able to handle Joe Smith’s power?
3.       Will Joe Smith be able to handle the pressure and speed of Dmitry?
4.       Will Dmitry be able to stay away from Joe Smith power, while fighting his fight at the same time?

According Main Events’ Matchmaker, Jolene Mizzone, “This match-up is a great one! Joe Smith gained national attention with his upset against a legend in Bernard Hopkins, the future Hall-of-Famer. Opponents are not lining up to face Dmitry Bivol but the champion is willing to fight anyone at any time. Despite the buzz around Bivol, Smith is ready to step up and take on the young champion and prove he ranks among the top contenders in the stacked light heavyweight division.”

Prograis-Relikh & Donaire-Tete WBSS Semi-Finals confirmed for Lafayette

Regis Prograis & Kiryl Relikh and Nonito Donaire & Zolani Tete continue their pursuit for the Ali Trophy on April 27 at the Cajundome in Lafayette, Louisiana, USA.

Fans in the U.S. and Canada can watch all the Ali Trophy semi-finals LIVE, exclusively on DAZN.

The road to Lafayette

Prograis-Relikh:

October 7 in Yokohama, Japan Kiryl Relikh defeated Russia’s Eduard Troyanovsky by a unanimous decision, with all judges scoring it 115-113 in favor of ‘Mad Bee’, to reach the semi-final, while tournament No.1 seed Regis Prograis advanced in more dominant fashion on October 27 in New Orleans, also via a unanimous decision, over the UK’s Terry Flanagan. The judges had it 119-108, 118-109, 117-110 for ‘Rougarou’.

“I know Relikh is a tough and strong fighter and I never look over an opponent but I have no doubt in my mind that I will win,” said Prograis. “I’m looking very much to the semi-final and the quest for the Ali Trophy,” said WBA Champion Relikh. “When I fight the fans will get the money’s worth. I predict just like all of my fights a win for me.”

Donaire-Tete:

October 13 in Ekaterinburg, Russia Zolani Tete outpointed Russia’s Mikhail Alo-yan with scores of 114-110, 114-111 and 114-111 for the ‘Last Born’, when he booked his place in the semi-final. Nonito ‘The Filipino Flash’ Donaire, a four-division world champion, won his quarter-final on November 3 in Glasgow, Scotland as No.1 seed, Northern Ireland’s Ryan Burnett, was forced to retire from the fight after four rounds of action due to a lower back injury.

“Tete is a formidable opponent and we have been preparing since the last fight. I’m even more excited with it being in the U.S. and won’t waste the opportunity to show the crowd what we’ve been working on,” said Donaire, WBA titleholder.

“Nonito Donaire is a true champion and has had a lot of success against my fellow countrymen like Moruti Mthalane and Jeffrey Mathebula in the past, but that stops here,” said WBO Champion Tete. “I respect Nonito, but I have a lot of faith in my own boxing ability and I will come out victorious when we fight.”

WBSS Season 2 Semi-Finals:

Bantamweight

  • Nonito Donaire vs Zolani Tete – 27 April, Cajundome, Lafayette, LA, USA
  • Naoya Inoue vs Emmanuel Rodriguez – 18 May, SSE Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland

Super-Lightweight

  • Regis Prograis vs Kiryl Relikh – 27 April, USA, Cajundome, Lafayette, LA, USA
  • Josh Taylor vs Ivan Baranchyk – 18 May, SSE Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland

Cruiserweight

  • Mairis Briedis vs Krzysztof Glowacki – 15 June, Arena Riga, Riga, Latvia
  • Yunier Dorticos vs Andrew Tabiti – 15 June, Arena Riga, Riga, Latvia 
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