Rey Vargas goes for a WBC title in a third weight this Saturday at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, as he takes on hometown favourite O’Shaquie Foster for the vacant green and gold belt at super featherweight, which was vacated by Shakur Stevenson.
SHOWTIME televise Vargas vs Foster in the USA.
Vargas (36-0, 22 KOs) first became world champion in 2017, when he won the vacant WBC bantamweight title with a majority decision win against Gavin McDonnell in Hull, and made five unanimous decision defences before suffering a broken leg that put him on the shelf for over two years.
The Mexican returned in November 2021 with a points win against Leonardo Baez, and he was last seen last July, securing the WBC featherweight title by coming off the canvas in the ninth round on the way to a unanimous verdict against Mark Magsayo.
Foster (19-2, 11 KOs) has climbed the WBC rankings, and is on a run of nine wins since a couple of early career losses.
The Texan has held the WBC Silver title since 2018, when he outpointed Jon Fernandez and his last defence came in March last year, where he widely outscored Muhammadkhuja Yaqubov in Dubai.
Victory for either man could set up a unification clash with recent WBO titlist, Emanuel Navarrete who stopped Liam Wilson on Saturday to win the belt.
Prediction: Vargas is on a long undefeated streak, and still has the fire to succeed in a third weight class. He can take over in the middle rounds for a clear points win.
Barrios battles Santiago
Former WBA super lightweight champion, Mario Barrios attempts to win his first fight in three, and he takes a ten round assignment against a man doing the same in Jovanie Santiago.
Barrios (26-2, 17 KOs) lost his belt to Gervonta Davis in June 2021 after giving a good account of himself, and his last contest was up at welterweight, where Keith Thurman handily outscore him in February last year.
Santiago (14-2-1, 10 KOs) has also been matched tough of late, losing over the distance to Adrien Broner in February 2021, and then retiring after six against Gary Antuanne Russell in May of the same year.
Prediction: Barrios can get the job done inside the distance in this one.
Ukrainian heavyweight Viktor Vykhryst (11-0, 7 KOs) goes over the scheduled ten round distance for the first time, and he can halt fellow unbeaten foe, Lenier Pero (8-0, 5 KOs) inside schedule.
In eight rounders, former interim world champion Claudio Marrero (26-5, 18 KOs) should win before the final bell in his super featherweight meeting against Gonzalo Fuenzalida (12-1, 3 KOs) and Eumir Felix Marcial (3-0, 1 KO) can win on the cards against Ricardo Ruben Villalba (20-7-1, 8 KOs) at middleweight.
The rest of the card features four rounders.
Fabian Diaz (3-0, 1 KO) can come through on points at lightweight against Eleazar Mendietta (0-1), and debutant Manuel Sifuentes can win early at light heavyweight against Jesus Ponce Aguilar (0-1).
In the battle of debutants at super welterweight, David Whitmire can take a stoppage win against Keith Foreman, and James Wohlschlegel debuts at light heavyweight, where he can stop 42-year-old Daniel Heinen (0-1).
Cuban heavyweight, Dainier Pero (2-0, 2 KOs) may need the distance to see off Daniel Zavala (2-1-2).