Knockout to fight Rojas for WBA minimumweight belt


Knockout to fight Rojas for WBA minimumweight belt

Unbeaten Knockout CP Freshmart will challenge WBA minimumweight champion Byron Rojas of Nicaragua in a mandatory fight in Khon Kaen on June 29.

Knockout CP Freshmart, left, fights Carlos Buitrago in February.

Thailand’s Knockout, who is the ‘interim’ champion of the 105-pound division, will become the ‘real’ champion if he beats newly-crowned champion Rojas, who upset then title-holder Hekkie Budler of South Africa in March.

Knockout’s manager Piyarat Wachirarattanawongse said his camp spent almost 10 million baht to stage the bout.

“I think it is a good investment,” he said. “Fighting at home gives us a huge advantage.”

After beating Carlos Buitrago of Nicaragua in Buri Ram in February, the 25-year-old Knockout, who has won all his 12 fights (6KOs), was expected to be declared the ‘real’ champion to replace Budler, who was expected to be promoted to become the ‘super’ champion.

However, Budler chose to defend the title and lost to Rojas in March.

Piyarat said that Rojas (17-2-3, 8KOs) is an aggressive fighter but not as strong as his compatriot Buitrago.

“Knockout has a high chance of becoming the ‘real’ champion,” he said.

But he added Knockout could not underestimate the 25-year-old champion following his win over highly-rated Budler.

The fight will be televised live on Channel 7 at 1.45pm.

Meanwhile, the mandatory fight between WBO bantamweight champion Pungluang Sor Singyu and top-ranked challenger Marlon Tapales of the Philippines has been postponed to July 27.

The match was originally scheduled for next week but the organisers could not find sponsors. The championship will take place in Thailand at a venue yet to be determined.

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