BACK on top of the boxing world after winning his third division world championship last December, Venezuela’s Jorge “El Niño De Oro” Linares will travel to London, England to defend his WBC Lightweight title for the first time against top British contender “Mighty” Kevin Mitchell at The O2, live on Sky Sports Box Office on Saturday, May 30. The WBC Lightweight World Championship is presented by Matchroom Boxing and Golden Boy Promotions in association with Akihiko Honda’s Teiken Boxing Gym and will be featured on the televised undercard of Kell Brook vs. Frankie Gavin.
“I am excited and honored to be defending my third world championship title in London,” said Jorge Linares. “This third title is something I have worked very hard for and I would like to thank my team, my family, Golden Boy Promotions and Akihiko Honda’s Teiken Boxing Gym for all their support throughout my journey. I have had a great training camp focusing on the skills that I need to defeat an opponent like Kevin Mitchell. I know he is a strong and aggressive fighter and I feel his style of fighting will suit me. This will not be an easy fight.”
“This is the making of my career,” said Kevin Mitchell. “I will win this fight and create a legacy as an unbeaten world champion. I know Jorge Linares is a three-weight world champion and a classy fighter – if you allow him to do what he wants to do, but I believe I will shut him down. I’ve matured, I feel secure with the team around me and I have left that party boy behind, I am enjoying it again. There’s excitement in me, Tony Sims is getting the best out of me as a result; it’s a good feeling. I know I am going to win this fight.”
“Jorge Linares is a world champion fighter and is determined to give Kevin Mitchell a difficult time in the ring as he looks to defend his title on May 30,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Founder and President of Golden Boy Promotions. “Mitchell may have hometown advantage but Linares’ speed and skill will give Mitchell a considerable challenge in the ring. Make no mistake though: this will be a difficult fight for both Linares and Mitchell and one that is sure to excite.”
A former world champion at the featherweight and super featherweight divisions, Barinas, Venezuela native Jorge “El Niño De Oro” Linares (38-3, 25 KOs) made it a trio of titles on December 30, 2014 when he knocked out Javier Prieto in four rounds in his adopted hometown of Tokyo, Japan to take the vacant WBC Lightweight Championship. It was another milestone in the 13-year career of the 29-year-old Linares, who has been one of boxing’s best of this era. Winner of bouts over Oscar Larios, Rocky Juarez, Jesus Chavez and Nihito Arakawa, Linares puts his seven-fight winning streak on the line against Mitchell.
A decorated amateur and professional boxer who has long been considered an elite European lightweight, “Mighty” Kevin Mitchell (39-2, 29 KOs) may have come up short in previous title fights against Michael Katsidis and Ricky Burns, but with six consecutive wins, five by knockout, under his belt, the 30-year-old from Dagenham is showing top form as he heads into the biggest fight of his career. Currently the WBC Silver Lightweight Champion, a title he won by stopping Daniel Estrada in eight rounds in January, Mitchell will have all of England behind him when he faces off against Linares on May 30.