WBA, WBC Diamond and Ring Magazine World Lightweight Champion Jorge “El Niño de Oro” Linares (42-3, 27 KOs) will put his titles and 11-fight win streak on the line Saturday, September 23 when he takes on Olympic Gold Medalist and No. 1 contender Luke Campbell (17-1, 14 KOs) in a 12-round main event from Los Angeles’ “Fabulous” Forum. The event will be televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark® beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.
Linares, a three-division world champion of Barinas, Venezuela, who has captured titles in the featherweight, super featherweight and lightweight division, has spent much of his career in Japan. This time, however, Linares will fight in the U.S. for the first time in three years after first winning and then defending his titles against former WBA World Lightweight Champion Anthony “Million Dollar” Crolla in the latter’s hometown of Manchester, England.
“I am excited to make my return to the United States and to headline an HBO show for the first time,” Linares said. “I know Luke Campbell is a tough competitor with an incredible amateur and professional background, but I am confident that I will emerge victorious on September 23rd.”
Campbell, a former WBC Silver Lightweight champion, who took home a gold medal in front of his English countrymen in the 2012 London Olympic Games, has defeated five solid contenders in a row including Darleys Perez, “Dirty” Derry Matthews, and Argenis Mendez since his only defeat nearly two years ago.
“It’s an honor to be fighting Jorge Linares for the WBA World title, WBC Diamond and Ring Magazine titles in one of the biggest fights in the division.” said Luke Campbell. I’ve worked my way from Olympic champion to the No.1 spot in the WBA and WBC rankings, and I feel now is the time to take my chance. All the pressure is on Jorge headlining back in the States on HBO and I am so confident I am going to leave with all 3 belts – I have tremendous respect for Jorge and this is going to be an unbelievable fight but this is the opportunity I have been waiting for as a professional and I must and will take it on September 23.”
“By fighting all over the world, Linares has established himself as an international fan favorite with a reputation for lightening quick hands, solid power and crafty defense,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. “I know how hard it is to win an Olympic gold medal, and given Campbell’s exciting style and punching power, we are in for an action-packed fight on September 23rd.
“It’s a pleasure to be working with Jorge Linares and Golden Boy again in helping to deliver this great fight on HBO,” said Matchroom Boxing promoter, Eddie Hearn. “Luke Campbell is the most successful amateur the UK has ever produced, capturing Olympic gold in London 2012 and as professional has now become the mandatory challenger with the WBA. He is a razor sharp fighter that can punch with both hands and this match up is one of tremendous skill and speed. We have been on the receiving end of three Linares defeats in the UK but Luke comes full of expectation and belief to become World champion on September 23.”
Linares vs. Campbell is a 12-round fight for the WBA, WBC Diamond and Ring Magazine Lightweight World Championships, to be held Saturday, September 23 at the ‘Fabulous’ Forum in Inglewood, California. The championship event is presented by Golden Boy Promotions and Matchroom Boxing, in association with Teiken Promotions. The event is sponsored by Tecate, BORN BOLD and Casa Mexico Tequila and will be televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.
On Saturday afternoon, September 23rd, WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker (23-0) takes on Hughie Fury (20-0). It was announced that the fight will be shown on pay-per-view in the United States, starting at 3:00 p.m. ET / 12:00 p.m. PT, live from Manchester Arena in Manchester, United Kingdom. Integrated Sports Media will distribute “Parker vs. Fury” live in the United States for a suggested retail price of only $24.95. Parker succeeded Fury’s unbeaten cousin, Tyson Fury, who vacated the WBO heavyweight title in 2016. Also airing live is the twelve-round junior middleweight fight between hometown hero Jimmy “Kilrain” Kelly (21-2, 9 KOs) and Stilliyan “Still Kill” Kostov (21-7, 16 KOs), of Bulgaria.
Outside of North America, “Parker vs. Fury” is being distributed to broadcasters worldwide by leading boxing television rights distribution firm, Protocol Sports Marketing Ltd.
“The Heavyweight Championship is still the biggest prize in sport and it can capture the imagination of the public like no other sport,” promoter Mick Hennessy said. “In my career as a promoter, this is right up there and very personal to me, and we look forward to delivering a fantastic event for the fans.”
The 25-year-old Parker, fighting out of New Zealand by way of Las Vegas, captured the vacant WBO heavyweight title in 2016, taking a 12-round majority decision from previously undefeated Andy Ruiz, Jr. (29-0) in New Zealand. Parker, who stands 6′ 4″, made his first world title defense this past May in New Zealand, winning a 12-round unanimous decision over Razvan Cojanu (16-2).
Parker’s other notable victims include Frans Botha, Brian Minto, Sherman Williams, Jason Pettaway, Kali Meehan, Carlos Takam and Alexander Dimitrenko.
“I’m excited that the next defense of my WBO World title will be in England because it is now the home of heavyweight boxing and I need to be fighting there regularly,” Parker remarked. “Fighting away from home holds no fears for me. I will arrive having previously fought on the undercard of a Wladimir Klitschko world title fight in Germany, also twice in America. I believe that with so many Kiwis and Samoans living in the UK, I may even have more supporters in the crowd on fight night than Hughie Fury.”
Fury has fully recovered from the back injury that postponed the original May 6 date for him to challenge Parker to Sept. 23 in Manchester.
In 2012, Fury became the first British super heavyweight to capture a gold medal at the World Youth Amateur Boxing Championships and he hasn’t missed a beat as a professional since making his pro debut in 2013.
The 6′ 6″ Fury, who celebrates his 23rd birthday on Sept. 18, will be fighting at home in Manchester. Last year in his two most recent fights, both in London, Fury won a 10-round unanimous decision against Dominick Guinn (35-10-1), as well as a seven-round technical decision over Fred Kassi (18-4-1).
“I’ve waited so long for this chance and my team have worked very hard to get me this fight,” Fury commented. “I’d like to thank everyone involved. I’m going to shock the world and prove all my doubters wrong and what better place to do it than in my home city of Manchester. Parker is a good fighter and I’ve no doubt we’ll both bring our A-game on fight night. I can’t wait to be crowned world champion.
“Parker is the biggest challenge of my life and he will bring the very best out of me, but I aim to deliver a knockout performance. I’ve prepared like never-before for this fight and pushed myself to the limits and beyond. There’s no way Parker is leaving Manchester with that World title. I will do everything to make sure that belt stays here with me.”
Exciting former world champion Nonito Donaire (37-4-0, 24 KOs) will return to the ring to take on Ruben Garcia Hernandez (22-2-1, 9 KOs) for the WBC Silver Featherweight Title in a bout that takes place alongside the World Boxing Super Series Quarterfinals from the Alamodome live in San Antonio and presented by Ringstar Sports.
Additional action will feature a 12-round showdown between once-beaten cruiserweights Keith Tapia (17-1, 11 KOs) and Latee Kayode (21-1, 16 KOs) that will serve as the reserve match for the World Boxing Super Series Quarterfinal matchup of Cuban WBA World Champion Yunier ‘The KO Doctor’ Dorticos (21-0, 20 KOs) versus Russian Dmitry ‘Russian Hammer’ Kudryashov (21-1, 21 KOs).
Donaire returns to the ring after a controversial loss last November to Jessie Magdaleno. Donaire recently teamed up with Ringstar Sports where he plans to reclaim his supremacy in the featherweight division. Garcia Hernandez is a tested Mexican fighter looking to make a name for himself in the U.S. at the Alamodome.
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