For many, the welterweight division is the hottest in boxing. This weekend, this belief ought to be reaffirmed when unbeaten Errol Spence fights Yordenis Ugas in Texas to unify the WBA, WBC, and IBF welterweight titles.
All the action will be broadcast live on SuperSport Action from 1am, Sunday).
Spence is one of the superstars of world boxing, a slick, hard-punching operator who will be making his sixth championship defence. Ugas, meanwhile, is riding high after his shock 2021 defeat of Manny Pacquiao that shot him into the upper reaches of the sport.
Having unified the belts in 2019, Spence’s career trajectory was halted a month later when he survived a horrific car crash that kept him out for a year. Although he rebounded with a win in his ring return, doubts persist whether he remains the A-grade fighter who beat down top opposition like Shawn Porter and others on his way to pound-for-pound reckoning. A detached retina also halted his ambition, yet he remains unbeaten and hasn’t looked vulnerable in a career going back 10 years.
In Ugas he’ll be facing a fighter who has rebounded from many setbacks, not least several failures to escape his native Cuba, to earn this big-money shot. Unusually for a Cuban boxer, is isn’t slick and smooth, preferring to plant his feet and fight at close range. He can box and counterpunch, but he prefers to stand and trade, which has worked well enough for him on his way to winning a major championship.
“I’m feeling good and I’m ready to go,” said Spence.” This layoff was easier for me after the injury than the one after the accident because it was a lot less stress on my body. Mentally I was also prepared for what I was going to go through. I have everything in my arsenal. Whatever Ugas brings to the table, I’m ready for it. I’m going to dictate the pace and control everything. I’m making him fight my fight.”
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