Category Archives: Press

February 18, 2015
February 18, 2015
Zou Shiming

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AFTER winning three World Championships and two Olympic gold medals as an amateur, Zou Shiming, in only his seventh professional fight and 23 months removed from his professional debut, will be challenging undefeated International Boxing Federation (IBF) flyweight world champion Amnat Ruenroeng.  The Showdown at Sands: Zou Shiming vs. Amnat Ruenroeng will headline an exciting all-action world championship boxing event, Saturday, March 7, at The Venetian® Macao’s Cotai Arena.

Promoted by Top Rank® and Sands China Ltd., in association with Tecate, SECA, Kreerin Promotions, Sampson Boxing and Foreman Boys Promotions, the Zou Shiming – Amnat Ruenroeng World Flyweight Championship fight will be televised via same-day delay on HBO2, beginning at 5:00 p.m. ET/PT.  The HBO2 telecast will open with a 10-round NABO junior middleweight title tilt between Glen Tapia (22-1, 14 KOs), of Passaic, NJ, and one-time world title challenger Daniel Dawson (40-4-1, 26 KOs), of Perth, Australia.  Veteran boxing blow-by-blow man and WNBC-TV’s lead sports anchor Bruce Beck and award-winning broadcaster and analyst Rich Marotta will be calling the action from ringside.

The undercard will feature Jose Felix Jnr (28-1-1, 23 KOs), from Los Mochis, Mexico, battling Raymond Sermona, (17-4-5, 8 KOs), of Manila, in an eight-round lightweight bout which will be televised via same-day delay on UniMás, and Top-10 contenders Ik Yang (17-0, 12 KOs), of Dalian, China and Patomsuk Pathompothong (30-2-1, 18 KOs), of Kalasin, Thailand, squaring off in a 12-round IBF junior welterweight title elimination bout.

Making the Zou-Ruenroeng fight even more intriguing is the history these two warriors already have with each other.  Their amateur trilogy began with Ruenroeng winning their first battle — as a late substitute called up by the Thailand amateur team — at the 2007 King’s Cup, which was also Ruenroeng’s first international competition.  Zou won the next two times they fought, including a reverse in their semi-final of the 2010 Asian Games that could have gone either way — and did.  Now that they are professionals, the stakes are much higher and their simmering rivalry is set to become a roiling boil.

“Beloved in the Peoples’ Republic of China and an incredible talent, Zou has earned his right to fight for a professional world championship belt,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum.  “It is fitting that the Zou vs. Ruenroeng world flyweight title fight take place at The Venetian Macao, which has become one of the great boxing capitals of the world.”

Zou (6-0, 1 KO), from Guizhou, China, and trained by Hall of Famer Freddie Roach, returns to the ring fresh from his most impressive professional victory — a 12-round unanimous decision victory over undefeated No. 3 contender Kwanpichit Onesongchaigym in a world flyweight title elimination bout. Their fight was the co-main event to the Manny Pacquiao – Chris Algieri world welterweight championship on November 22 at Cotai Arena.  Zou scored three knockdowns en route to a 119-106, 119-106 and 120-103 victory over his vastly more experienced opponent.  He showed his mettle by fighting through numerous head butts that swelled his left eye shut as well as weathering numerous low blows.  But Zou kept his composure throughout the fight showing the world he was ready for a world title shot.  Last July 19, Zou stepped up to his first 10-round fight, where he captured the vacant World Boxing Organization (WBO) International flyweight title with a unanimous decision victory over Top-10 contender Luis De La Rosa, proving to the world that he had developed into a world title contender.  Zou is currently world-rated No. 1 by the WBO and No. 4 by the IBF.  He won his professional debut April 6, 2013 at Fists of Gold, via a dominant four-round unanimous decision over gritty Eleazar Valenzuela. He followed that up with six-round unanimous decision victories last year over Jesus Ortega and Juan Toscano, July 27 at Fists of Gold II and November 24 at The Clash in Cotai, respectively, and celebrated his 2014 debut with his first professional knockout, February 22, at Ring of Gold, stopping Yokthong Kokietgym in the seventh round. All of Zou’s professional bouts have taken place at the Cotai Arena. One of the most popular Olympic athletes in China, Zou was the world’s greatest amateur light flyweight, capturing gold medals in the World Amateur Championships in 2005, 2007 and 2011, along with gold medals in the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympic Games. He also owns an Olympic bronze medal from the 2004 games, making him his nation’s first Olympic medallist in boxing as well as its first boxing gold medallist in the World Amateur Championships and the Olympics.

Ruenroeng (14-0, 5 KOs), of Si Racha, Thailand, overcame a troubled past to reach the pinnacle of his division.  Beating a severe drug addiction and enduring three prison terms, Ruenroeng found his salvation through a prison boxing program that saw him become a national amateur champion, while still an inmate,  as a member of the Thai Corrections Department team.  A bronze medallist at the 2007 World Amateur Championships in Chicago and a member of Thailand’s 2008 Olympic team, Ruenroeng made his professional debut in 2012 when he didn’t make the 2012 Olympic team.  He made his presence known to his division in his second year as a professional winning the IBF/Asia flyweight title and successfully defending it three times.  He captured the vacant IBF flyweight world title on January 22, 2014, scoring a unanimous decision over Rocky Fuentes.  He has successfully defended the title twice since winning it   His first title defense was against unbeaten two-division world champion Kazuto Ioka, in Iaoka’s homeland of Oska, Japan, last May 7.  In his most recent title defense, on September 10, Ruenroeng survived a knockdown en route to a split decision victory over mandatory challenger McWilliams Arroyo.


February 18, 2015
February 18, 2015

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FRANKIE GAVIN will challenge Chris van Heerden for the IBF International Welterweight title clash on May 9 at the Barclaycard Arena in Birmingham, live on Sky Sports.

Gavin will headline in the second city in Matchroom Sport’s first major show there for 13 years and his first fight in the city since September 2010, and his meeting with the South African visitor will follow an appearance on the undercard of IBF World ruler Kell Brook’s first title defence in Sheffield on March 28 as the Birmingham star chases a future showdown with ‘The Special One’.

Van Heerden has beaten British opposition before having defeated Matthew Hatton in March 2013 in his then-hometown of Johannesburg, defending his IBO World title for the second time in the process. The 27 year old now fights out of California and picked up the belt he defends against ‘Funtime’ in Birmingham in January , knowing a victory on foreign soil would see him burst into World title contention in the lucrative 147lb division.

“It’s a massive fight for me and a huge one for my first big night in Birmingham,” said Gavin. “Fighting in Birmingham means so much to me and now I am going to do so in a massive fight as the headliner of a great bill. It’s time to get my profile up, get happy, get winning, looking good again and getting on the path to a world title.”

World rated Middleweight Matthew Macklin boxes in Birmingham for the first time in almost five years as he looks to bounce back from defeat to Jorge Sebastian Heiland, unbeaten Super Flyweight sensation Kal Yafai will be in title action on the card and his brother Gamal will continue his rise in the pro ranks while all-action Stourbridge youngster Sam Eggington will be hoping for a major title bout on the bill should he beat Shayne Singleton in Hull on March 7.


February 18, 2015
February 18, 2015

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HEAVYWEIGHT star Tyson Fury has vowed to make it a short night’s work when he meets dangerous German Christian Hammer next weekend.

The European and WBO International Heavyweight Champion, who is the mandatory challenger for Wladimir Klitschko’s world crown, was speaking during a media workout at his gym in Bolton, ahead of his February 28th showdown at London’s O2 Arena .

Undefeated Fury, who has an impressive 17 knockouts from his 23 wins, is looking to add another victim to his record in the shape of Hammer, though despite gunning for a knockout is refusing to underestimate the 27-year-old, who is unbeaten since 2010.

“I’ve had a great camp, training has gone very well and because of that I don’t see this fight going beyond five rounds. I want the knockout and that’s what I’m out to get on February 28th,” said Fury.

“There’s a reason this bill is being labelled ‘Risky Business’ because of everything that is on the line. I’m mandatory to face Wladimir Klitschko next but if I don’t win this fight I’ll lose that mandatory position and my chance to fight for the world title

“We’ve seen fighters in the past who have been in a similar position and lost but that’s not going to happen with me. The reason is because I’m not overlooking Christian Hammer.

“I’ve seen him in the amateurs and I’ve seen the progress he has made in the paid ranks, he’s a very good fighter and not someone you can overlook.

“But a Tyson Fury fight is never boring and I can guarantee excitement and drama when I step in the ring. Put it this way, someone is getting knocked out and it isn’t going to be me,” Fury said.

Manchester’s Fury ended 2014 on a high with a commanding victory over the much respected Dereck Chisora to muscle himself into pole position to face the world’s number one heavyweight in Klitschko.

Now, 26-year-old Fury is out to first beat Hammer before ushering in a new era in boxing’s glamour division by dethroning the formidable Ukrainian legend and making 2015 a year to remember.

“I want Klitschko but I’m not overlooking Hammer because that would be foolish. When I win this fight that will be the time to talk Klitschko and he will have to step up and face me,” said Fury.

“Last year was a frustrating year, despite it ending well, but it’s all in the past now and I’m just looking forward to the future and becoming a world champion.

“The heavyweight division has to sit up and take notice because there’s going to be a changing of the guard and crowning of a new King in 2015 in Tyson Fury,” he said.

Chris Eubank Jnr will also be back in action on the night following his split decision loss to Billy Joe Saunders last November, when he takes on Dmitry Chudinov for the interim WBA world middleweight title.

Rising super-featherweight ace Liam Walsh is also part of the impressive lineup when he faces Joe Murray for the British and Commonwealth titles.

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February 18, 2015
February 18, 2015

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CBS Sports and SHOWTIME Sports® have announced a multi-year joint venture to present live boxing on the CBS Television Network-the first of up to eight live events in 2015 will premiere on Saturday, April 4 at 3 p.m. ET on CBS.  Premier Boxing Champions on CBS will air in conjunction with marquee SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING events as part of a partnership that will cross-promote the live programs across multiple platforms.

The first six weeks to begin this venture will feature two of the biggest names in the sport – Julio Cesar Chavez Jnr and Adonis Stevenson – and bookend this year’s most anticipated boxing event, the SHOWTIME PPV® presentation of the undisputed pound-for-pound champion Floyd Mayweather.

Each live boxing event on CBS and SHOWTIME will be supported with short- and long-form shoulder programming that will air across multiple platforms including CBS, SHOWTIME and CBS Sports Network.  In addition, a significant marketing budget will be dedicated to promoting each of the live CBS broadcasts and each major SHOWTIME telecast with targeted advertising campaigns.

“The Premier Boxing Champions series on CBS will help usher in a new era in the storied history of boxing,” said Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President & General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports.  “With the support of our parent company, we are uniquely positioned for a three-tiered approach that includes live boxing broadcasts on America’s No. 1 network, the cable reach of CBS Sports Network and, of course, the premium television leader in boxing, SHOWTIME.  The benefit of elevating the sport across these platforms for all involved, including SHOWTIME, is immeasurable.”

The schedule of upcoming live boxing events on CBS and SHOWTIME is as follows:

On Saturday, March 28, SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING will present a doubleheader featuring a featherweight showdown between WBC champion Jhonny Gonzalez and top contender Gary Russell Jr., and a matchup of 154-pound contenders Jermell Charlo and Vanes Martirosyan.  The live SHOWTIME telecast will preview the following week’s April 4 CBS debut of Premier Boxing Champions.

The CBS premiere on Saturday, April 4 (3 p.m. ET/Noon PT) will feature light heavyweight world champion Adonis Stevenson defending his WBC title against former super middleweight champ Sakio Bika.  In the co-feature, undefeated light heavyweight contender Artur Beterbiev will face veteran former world champ Gabriel Campillo.  The CBS broadcast, with its national reach of more than 110 million households, will offer a broad platform to promote a major SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING event just two weeks later.

On Saturday, April 18, SHOWTIME presents the network debut of former world champion and Mexican superstar Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., as he takes on light heavyweight contender Andrzej Fonfara.

On Saturday, May 9 Premier Boxing Champions returns to CBS for the second installment (4:30 p.m. ET/1:30 p.m. PT).  This broadcast will pit undefeated Omar Figueroa, who recently vacated his Lightweight World Championship to move up in weight to 140 pounds, against former champion Ricky Burns.

The April 18 SHOWTIME telecast and the May 9 CBS broadcast will support-and be supported by-the May 2 SHOWTIME PPV event featuring the undefeated, world’s No. 1 ranked fighter, Floyd Mayweather.

Additional confirmed dates for Premier Boxing Champions on CBS include live broadcasts in June, July and September, with up to three remaining events on the 2015 calendar yet to be announced. The live boxing broadcasts on CBS, other than the aforementioned premiere, will be broadcast live at 4:30 p.m. ET/1:30 p.m. PT.

The Premier Boxing Champions series was created for television by Haymon Sports. It is the first consistent series presentation of live boxing on CBS in 15 years.  The network aired a one-off live event featuring current WBC Super Bantamweight Champion Leo Santa Cruz in 2012.  Prior to that, the last live boxing on the network was in 1997 when then-middleweight champion Bernard Hopkins knocked out Glen Johnson.


February 17, 2015
February 17, 2015
Derry mathews

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DERRY MATHEWS will feature on two big shows at the Echo Arena in the coming months when he fights on Friday March 6 before going on to face Richar Abril for the WBA World Lightweight title on Saturday April 18.

Mathews was due to face Abril on March 6, but the Cuban World Champion was forced to withdraw last week after being diagnosed with a viral infection and unable to train, with his team asking to postpone the date.

However, the Merseysider will still fight on the title packed show alongside fellow Scousers Kevin Satchell, Jazza Dickens, Liam Smith, Tom Stalker, Stephen Lewis plus Lancashire hot-shot Jack Catterall, in a defence of his WBA Continental title.

He will then headline a show on Saturday April 18 when he aims to finally realise his dream of being crowned world champion in front of his home fans when he takes on the reigning world champion.

Mathews’ last fight was in October when he defeated Adam Dinsdale to claim the WBA Continental title and says he be razor sharp for Abril come fight night.

“After a nightmare few days when Abril withdrew I’m delighted that he kept to his word and is still coming to Liverpool and defending his title against me.  My promoter Frank Warren and management team have worked hard behind the scenes to keep my world title dream alive and I’m really grateful,” said Mathews.

“First I’ll fight on March 6 at the Echo Arena, the date originally scheduled for my title challenge and which I have focused and trained hard for and I’ll use it to sharpen up against Abril,”

“Then on April 18th it’s the big one against Abril.  Like I said before, this is the culmination of my career and the moment I have been waiting for.  I will be fitter, sharper, stronger and hungrier than ever before to make sure I win the WBA World title in front of my home crowd.”


February 17, 2015
February 17, 2015

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MARTIN GETHIN believes he is more than capable of causing an upset in Hull when he clashes with hometown hero, Tommy Coyle at the Ice Arena in Hull, live on Sky Sports on March 7.

The Walsall boxer travels to the Hull Ice Arena to take on Coyle at the top of the bill, and while the former British Lightweight Champion has been impressed by Coyle’s recent form but insists he is a long way from being the finished article.

“Tommy’s come on in recent years but he’s got a reputation that, for me, exceeds his ability,” said Gethin. “He beat Michael Katsidis last time out but let’s be honest; Katsidis was finished a long time ago.

“Tommy fought Daniel Brizuela and got knocked down four times. He did well to come back and win that one but it seems like he’s easy enough to tag. Derry Mathews got him out of there with one punch, so he does have chinks in his armour that I’ll be looking to exploit.

“I’ll pressure him but I will do it in the right way. He’s a good boxer and I respect him but I think I have what it takes to beat him.

“He’s a little over-hyped in my opinion and I want to prove that he’s not the real deal. It’s a good fight for both of us. Whoever wins; it’s a decent name to have on your slate.”

As big a fight as it is for Coyle, on his home turf at the top of the bill, it’s a big night for Gethin. The 31-year-old stopped a run of three consecutive defeats – against Ammeth Diaz in an IBF World Title Eliminator and Derry Mathews and Terry Flanagan both for the Lord Lonsdale lightweight strap – with a technical decision victory over journeyman Kevin McAuley in December.

After failing against domestic rivals Mathews and Flanagan, defeat to Coyle would be another blow to Gethin’s hopes of mixing with the country’s best. However, Gethin is convinced he will spoil the Hull man’s party and return to the Midlands with victory.

“A win is always important but this is a big one for me,” Gethin added. “I need to show people that I’m still a force at this level. What better way to do that than live on Sky? I’d like to thank Eddie Hearn and his team, and my manager, Errol Johnson, for getting me this shot. It’s a great chance for me.

“It’s never the end but a loss would take some getting back from. I look at Derry (Mathews) and how he’s turned things around but the climb is greater after a defeat.

“Tommy is in front of me and I’m confident of causing what many would see as an upset. I don’t see it that way. I’ve got a good record and have been in with some good fighters. I like him as a guy but I’m coming to his neck of the woods and I plan on leaving with the win.”

Gethin’s clash with Coyle is part of a big night of action in Hull as exciting Birmingham man Sam Eggington challenges Shayne Singleton for the WBC International Silver Welterweight title.

Liverpool’s world-rated Super Middleweight Rocky Fielding returns to action after a hand injury, unbeaten north east Light Welterweight star Bradley Saunders builds up to his hometown Commonwealth title clash with Dave Ryan, unbeaten Birmingham star Gamal Yafai continues his pro development and five local favourites get action on the bill in Tom Knight, Nathon Smith, Charlie Payton, Connor Seymour and Ryan Fuller.

February 16, 2015
February 16, 2015
Willie Limond

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WILLIE LIMOND will defend his British Light Welterweight title against Chris Jenkins at the First Direct Arena in Leeds on April 11, live on Sky Sports.

Scotsman Limond wrestled the title from Curtis Woodhouse in Glasgow in June, landing a Lonsdale belt at the second time of asking after challenging Anthony Crolla for the Lightweight title back in 2011.

Unbeaten Welsh challenger Jenkins rose to fame after running away with the Prizefighter Light Welterweights III tournament in July 2013, entering the night with just seven fights under his belt but winning every round of his quarter-final and semi-final before knocking out Danny Connor in the second round of the final. The 26 year old has moved to 16-0 and picked up the WBC International Light Welterweight title a year ago, but faces his first big test against the experienced Scot in Yorkshire.

Limond’s clash with Jenkins is part of a huge night of action in Leeds, as hometown favourite Josh Warrington faces Dennis Tubieron for the vacant WBC International Featherweight title and World title eliminator.

Martin J. Ward and Maxi Hughes rematch in a British Super Featherweight title eliminator after their exciting draw in December. Leeds man and British Light Heavyweight champ Bob Ajisafe, world-rated Super Middleweight Rocky Fielding and Prizefighter champion Jono Carroll will also be in action. Limond and Jenkins replace Nathan Cleverly on the bill, with the former World champion now set to appear in London on April 25.

IN THIS WEEK’S BOXING NEWS… Exclusive and fascinating interview with Chris Eubank Snr“I am a strong father. He is shaped by my parenting. It has turned him into a predator.”