Unbeaten Cuban heavyweight Mike Perez is promising double trouble on the Yanjing Fight Night in Limerick on Saturday as he bids to enter the record books by fighting twice on the same night in officially recorded professional bouts.
Perez features on the undercard of Andy Lee's clash with former European Champion Mamadou Thiam and he's hoping to make the boxing word sit up and take notice with an incredible double.
Perez will open the show on Saturday night when he takes on Latvia's Edgar Kalnars and should everything go smoothly for the Cork based southpaw in that contest then he will be back in the ring for a second time in a matter of hours when he faces Tomas Mrazek from the Czech Reublic.
Perez's participation in the second bout is subject to a medical examination immediately following the first bout by the Boxing Union of Ireland's ringside doctor but the man himself sees little difficulty with the task at hand.
“I think it's a great idea and when Brian Peters suggested it I jumped at the opportunity because I have had over a year out of the ring with an injury so I am looking to keep as busy as possible now and it doesn't get any better than having two fights in one night.”
Peters believes that the Perez double adds further spice to Saturday night's undercard. “Mike is chomping at the bit to fight because he has been out of the ring for so long and it's been very frustrating for him,” said Peters. “He's an incredible raw talent and he wants to start fulfilling his potential and shake up the heavyweight division and pulling off this feat on Saturday night will certainly cause a stir.
“Previously heavyweight legends such as Joe Louis, Jack Dempsey and George Foreman have fought more than once on the same night but they were always only exhibition bouts and were never counted as official contests but these bouts on Saturday night will be official and hopefully as long as Mike does the business they will improve his unbeaten record from 6 and 0 to 8 and 0.”
Meanwhile World and European Lightweight champion, Katie Taylor has been forced to withdraw from the card after a nose injury sustained in sparring last week failed to respond to treatment. Taylor was advised to pull out of her scheduled fight with Ukrainian Champion Oleksandra Sydorenko. A specialist confirmed this morning that Taylor would not be fit to fight on Saturday much to the Bray woman's frustration.
“I'm devastated that I won't be able to fight,” said Taylor. “I was so excited about fighting in Limerick and I was hoping against hope that the injury would have healed in time. If it was up to me I would still have got in there and boxed but I know that the medical people have my best interests at heart and in the long run it's probably better that I don't risk making the injury any worse by fighting on Saturday.
“I'm still going down to the fight and hopefully I'l get the opportunity to fight there in the future. Obviously I'd rather be in the ring boxing than watching on as a spectator but I'm still looking forward to it because it looks like it will be a great night of boxing. Andy's in a very tough fight but he's a great fighter and I'm sure he'll come through it.”
Another injury casualty on Saturday night's card has seen Ian Tims pull out of his Irish title grudge match with Michael Sweeney after he tore arm ligaments in training for the bout.
“Obviously the withdraws are disappointing but overall it's still an excellent undercard,” said Peters. “There will be 8 bouts in total including what should be an explosive main event, an Irish title fight, Mike Perez fighting twice, Andy Murray, Luis Garcia taking on Alexander Sipos and fights featuring Paddy McDonah and Alan Donnellon.”
Limerick's own Jamie Power will be looking to steal the show on the undercard when he bids to win the Irish Light Heavyweight title in a clash with Mayo's John “The Warrior” Waldron in a bout that will make history as Limerick's first ever Irish professional title bout.
Undefeated Cavan star Andy Murray will be looking to continue his perfect record and follow on from his impressive win over Oisin Fagan in the main event on RTÉ's last Pro Box Live show. The 27-year-old lightweight has 18 straight wins to his name in the pro ranks and is currently rated number 3 in Europe. He faces Englishman Amir Unsworth in Limerick.
Perez's compatriot Luis Garcia will also be out to impress against Germany's Alexander Sipos, a former European title challenger who gave Andy Lee a very decent argument at The O2 in Dublin last March. Despite having had just 5 professional fights the 22-year-old Super Middleweight is already ranked in the world's top 50 and has been described by many boxing insiders as a special talent and a future World Champion.
Another intriguing contest on the bill will see Mullingar's Paddy McDonagh taking a major step up in class as he tackles former Irish Champion and Andy Lee opponent Ciaran Healy in just his third pro fight while the Limerick based Galwegian Alan Donnellon makes his professional debut in a Light Middleweight contest against England's Ryan Clark.
Tickets for the Yanjing Fight Night priced €30, €40, €50, €60, €75 and €100 are available from Ticketmaster (phone 0818 719 300 or visit ticketmaster.ie) or locally in Limerick from The University Sports Arena, the George Hotel and the South Court Hotel.