A WBC lightweight title eliminator is at the top of the bill at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas this Saturday, as Frank Martin and Artem Harutyunyan clash for what the winner hopes will be a world title shot against Devin Haney, who holds all four world titles.
SHOWTIME televise Martin vs Harutyunyan in the USA.
Martin (17-0, 12 KOs), who trains with the likes of Errol Spence Jr and Anthony Joshua in Dallas under Derrick James, has impressed since stepping up in level and distance, and 2022 saw him open with a fourth round stoppage of Romero Duno, which was followed eye-catching tenth round rout of Jackson Marinez, before rounding the year off with a shutout points win over twelve against Michel Rivera.
Born in Armenia, but based in Germany, Harutyunyan (12-0, KO7) has remained unbeaten since turning over after winning a Bronze medal at the 2016 Olympics.
The unbeaten 32-year-old hasn’t boxed since last June, where he defended the WBC International strap with a points win over ten against Humberto Galindo in Hamburg.
Prediction: Martin has faced better opposition and looks more polished than his opponent, and I favour him to score a statement stoppage win to knock on the world title door.
Donaire faces Santiago in world title clash
Back for more on this bill is Nonito Donaire, who returns once more in search of a world title when he faces Alexandro Santiago for the vacant WBC bantamweight crown.
Four-weight world champion, Doniare (42-7 28 KOs) was last seen in June 2022, hammered in a two round defeat to the gifted Naoya Inoue in a rematch of their original thriller, who then relinquished all four of his belts after stopping Paul Butler in December with the Japanese great set to challenge unified super bantamweight champion, Stephen Fulton Jr on July 25.
The four-year-old should have enough left to take victory against Santiago (27-3-5, 14 KOs) though, who has won his last three.
Prediction: A points win for ’The Filipino Flash’ is the likely outcome.
Elvis Rodriguez (14-1-1, 12 KOs) gets a decent test over ten at super lightweight, and he’ll likely need the cards to take the win against former WBC champion, Viktor Postol (31-4, 12 KOs), who was stopped for the first time last time out.
The other ten rounder is at welterweight, where Freudis Rojas (10-0, 10 KOs) can keep his knockout streak in tact with an early win against Diego Santiago Sanchez (19-2, 16 KOs).
Also at welterweight, Quinton Randall (12-0-1, 3 KOs) can bank an eight round points win against Willie Jones (9-2, 6 KOs), and super lightweight Justin Cardona (8-1, 4 KOs) can outscore Jose Perez (11-1-2, 5 KOs) in their eight rounder.
In the sole six rounder, Anthony Cuba (5-0-2, 3 KOs) can stay unbeaten at lightweight against Angel Rebollar (6-2, 3 KOs) via the points route.
In four round action, Alex Holley should see off Michael De La Cruz (1-2-2) on debut.