Veteran boxing promoter Lenny Fresquez has predicted that "The Reckoning," featuring a June 15 rematch between French knockout-artist Anne Sophie Mathis and Holly "The Preachers Daughter" Holm, will be the 2012 Female Fight of the Year.
"The Reckoning," presented by Fresquez Productions, will be held at Route 66 Casino Hotel in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
"I think it'll be closely fought and the Fight of the Year," Fresquez said. "Hands down, they are the top two women fighters in the world. This will be the most important fight of Holly's career, in which she'll try to regain her pound-for-pound status."
Mathis will defend her IBA and WBAN welterweight title belts, as well as the mythical pound-for-pound crown, for the first time since capturing the coveted straps last December by way of a stunning seventh-round knockout of hometown darling Holm.
Mathis (26-1, 22 KOs) was fighting in the United States for the first time, while Holm (30-2-3, 9 KOs) had been unbeaten for seven years during a 24-fight stretch.
"Holly won the first four rounds and in the fourth she hit Anne Sophie with a good body shot," Fresquez recounted their "World Dominance" showdown. "Holly went for the kill; she started brawling, instead of boxing, and got caught. Holly rushed out for the fifth round and, in her words, didn't execute the game plan. She understands the mistakes she made and has learned from them."
Mathis is a power puncher, Holm a consummate boxer. But Holly got away from her game plan. "Mathis came into the fight last December with 22 knockouts in 25 fights," Fresquez continued. "Everybody knew about her power and the plan was for Holly to out-box her from a distance. Holly hurt her in the fourth with that body punch but then she got away from her game plan. We took that loss as a team. Anne Sophie Mathis was the best fighter in the world that night."
Seven-time world champion and reigning IBA/WBA titilist Mathis, who is riding a 25-fight win streak, has defeated world champions such as Holm, Myriam Lamare (twice), Jane Couch, Duda Yankovich, Ana Pascal and Nathalie Toro.
Holm is a nine time, three-division world champion who has defeated some of the most notable women boxers of her era, from the 140 through 154-pound weight classes, including Christy Martin, Mary Jo Sanders, Mia St. John, Couch, Yankovich and Chevelle Hallback (twice).
"I've never seen Holly so determined," Fresquez concluded. "Based on past statistics, I understand that about 85 percent of rematches are won by the winner of the first fight. But Coach Winkeljohn and I strongly feel that Holly has learned from her mistakes and she will gain retribution on June 15th.
"In the last fight, they were throwing leather, and I've never seen women hit like that. These two women are more ferocious than a lot of guys. In all my years promoting women's boxing, I never saw a fight that both fighters threw and connected on so many hard punches. They tried to take each other's heads off. I expect this fight to be equally exciting and hard fought."
Mathis and Holm are simply the best women fighters, pound for pound, in the world today. This could develop into the greatest rivalry in women's boxing history.