Ricky Burns vs. Jose Ocampo on 12/15 in London, England; Belmontes vs. Hunter
World Boxing Organization (WBO) World Lightweight Champion Ricky Burns says he will end the year with a bang against hard-hitting Filipino challenger Jose Ocampo.
Scottish hero Burns makes the third defence of his title on promoter Frank Warren’s six-title extravaganza on Saturday 15th December at the ExCeL London, live and exclusive on BoxNation (Sky Ch. 437/Virgin Ch. 546).
Burns is coming off a career best win destroying British rival Kevin Mitchell inside four rounds in September and is now in line for a huge unification showdown with American star Adrien Broner who won the WBC title earlier this month.
First he has to get through the heavy handed Ocampo, ranked number 14 by the WBO, who has stopped 12 out of 17 opponents early and although he has five losses and a draw, he has never been stopped.
He replaces the original challenger Liam Walsh who was injured in a car crash two weeks ago forcing him to withdraw from the fight.
The 23-year-old comes from the Sarangani Province that is governed by Congressman and pound-for-pound best Manny Pacquiao.
And Ocampo, a former WBO Oriental has been described as a young Pacquiao with a similar aggressive, strong punching style and plenty of fighting heart.
Two-weight world champion Burn’s, who’s had a top year with title defences against Paulus Moses and Mitchell, says he will put in a devastating performance.
“I’d say that this is going to be the hardest fight of my career so far against a young hungry challenger who will be looking to take my title,” Said Burns
“Filipino fighters are as tough as they come, just look at Pacquiao and Nonito Donnaire, like the Mexican’s and African’s they come to have a fight and Ocampo will do just that. If he fights like those two, as people say he does, then I’ll be in for a tough night,”
“It’s unfortunate that Walsh had an accident and had to pull out of our fight, but I’m a world champion and I have to deal with these changes and I’m confident I’ll deal with Ocampo,”
“I’ll let my trainer Billy Nelson do the homework and he’ll come up with the master plan to beat this guy like he has done for all my big fights against Mitchell, Katsidis and Martinez,”
Promoter Frank Warren added, “It’s going to be hard for Ricky, he’s been training to face Walsh and in an ideal world he would have had more time to prepare for the different style that Ocampo will bring. He can’t afford to slip up, though, we are virtually there with the fight against Broner for next year and that will only happen if he comes through against Ocampo.”
Burns v Ocampo headlines a massive six-title card that features George Groves defending his Commonwealth Super-Middleweight title against Glen Johnson in the chief support; plus Commonwealth Middleweight Champion Billy Joe Saunders defends his title against Nick Blackwell with the vacant British title also on the line; unbeaten Bradley Skeete challenges Southern Area Welterweight Champion Chas Symonds for his title and WBO International Cruiserweight Champion Tony Conquest defends against Neil Dawson.
Tickets, priced from £40 are available at www.eventim.co.uk or by calling 0844 2491000.
The show will be live and exclusive on BoxNation (Sky Ch. 437/Virgin Ch. 546). Join at www.boxnation.com
Belmontes Plans to Defeat Hunter in Co-Feature – Dec 8 NBC Sports Network Fight Night
CORPUS CHRISTI, TX – Undefeated Jerry Belmontes, 17-0, 5 KOs, sees his upcoming nationally televised 10-rounder with Eric Hunter, 16-2, 9 KOs, as the opportunity he’s been waiting for to breakthrough to the next level in the junior lightweight division. In fact he feels that if he can win big enough to impress fans and the powers that be, a victory over Hunter might just earn him a title shot. The fight will be shown live on NBC Sports Network Fight Night; the telecast begins at 10 PM ET.
“From the way we’re going to perform, to the way we’re going to fight,” Belmontes said, “this fight will get me up there. Eric Hunter has a name. I remember him from the amateurs. A really good boxer. I think I’ve seen him fight two times as a pro. So I know a lot about him.”
Belmontes, the “Corpus Christi Kid”, started boxing as a 65-pound, ten year old, and went on to build an amazing amateur record of 119-18, collecting numerous national and international amateur titles along the way. He turned pro at age 18 in 2008. Eric “The Outlaw” Hunter also had a distinguished amateur run, and holds a reputation in Philly as one of the City’s most talented boxers. Although the pair never met back in the day, this professional showdown couldn’t be more important to their careers.
“Every time you fight on national TV, that’s a huge thing,” Belmontes said. “Fighting on NBC Sports Network Fight Night and finally fighting ten rounds, that’s just another step closer to a world championship.”
After a few false starts with early promoters and managers, Belmontes feels he’s got the right team and the right focus to take it all the way to the top.
“Main Events is leading me down the right path to be a world champion,” he said. “Right now, I feel the pace is right. I’m happy that I’m with them.”
Belmontes looks forward to an eventful 2013, “In 2013, we’re looking for the best, everybody in the top ten; I know it will come next year. We’re going to call people out like crazy, and hopefully they answer.” He added, “What I really want is to have one or two fights in Corpus Christi and then fight for the title. But if a title fight comes sooner, then that’s cool with me.”
Yuriorkis Gamboa, Diego Magdaleno, Rances Barthelemy, Juan Carlos Delgado and Orlando Salido are all on Belmontes radar for the upcoming year.
The match itself may turn out to be the fight of the night on the blockbuster card from Temple University’s Pearson / Mcgonigle Hall in North Philly. Both men are accomplished boxers who are depending on a win.
“We’re just going in there to execute the game plan,” Belmontes said. “To be a world champion would be a dream come true. It’s been my dream since I started boxing, and now I’m hungrier to be a world champion because I’m so close to it. Nothing’s going to stop me from getting to where I want to be.”
ABOUT DECEMBER 8TH
Pearson/McGonigle Halls, a 4,500-seat venue at Temple University located at 1800 North Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19121. It has hosted both professional and amateur boxing in the past, but when NBC Sports Network broadcasts the sixth installment of its Fight Night series on Dec. 8, it will be the first professional boxing event held at Pearson/McGonigle Halls in over 19 years.
Nine bouts are planned for the Philadelphia card. The fight is promoted by Main Events, Peltz Boxing, and Goossen Tutor Promotions in association with BAM Boxing. Tickets priced at $35, $50 and $75 can be purchased by calling Peltz Boxing at 215-765-0922 or going online at www.peltzboxing.com. Tickets also are on sale at www.comcastTIX.com.