IBF super featherweight titleholder Argenis “La Tormenta” Mendez (21-2, 11 KOs) has been training in England for his first world title defense on August 23, airing live on ESPN Friday Night Fights, against challenger Arash Usmanee (20-1, 10 KOs), from Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York.
Mendez, rated No. 2 in the world by ProBoxing-Fans.com, fights for the first time since he captured his IBF belt this past March, dismantling defending champion Juan Carlos Salgado (26-1-1) in a rematch that ended with a sensational knockout in the fourth round.
IBF No. 13-rated Usmanee is a five-time Canadian National amateur champion who is a former North American Boxing Association (NABA) super featherweight and World Boxing Council (WBC) Continental Americas lightweight champion.
Mendez lives in Miami but trains in England with his head trainer, Lee Beard. Mendez checked in last week from training camp, to report, “We’re in the final stage of training camp. I had a strenuous workout last Saturday in the mountains. Working out there is so tough. I need to go past my regular training limits to defend my title. Only weeks remain for me to get ready to fight for my country, Dominican Republic.”
“We are almost ready for August 23rd. My speed will be a big problem for Usmanee. I’m the best Dominican fighter and as world champion I must be 100-percent ready for this and all my fights. I’m the best super featherweight on this planet.”
“I know how to get the best out of people and Mendez came out like a caged beast in his last fight to win the world title,” Iron Mike Productions CEO Garry Jonas said. “Argenis is the best fighter in the world at 130 pounds, hands down. He leads an incredible team we have here for years to come.”
“We have no doubt in our company that Argenis Mendez is the best super featherweight out there at this time,” Iron Mike Productions COO Henry Rivalta added. “We are witnessing an athlete who has all the elements to become an elite boxer and future pound-for- pound fighter. Fans at Turning Stone, or those watching on ESPN, will see an exceptional fighter in Argenis Mendez.”