News: Vassiliy Jirov Is Back; Herrera Headlines Aug 14 Show

Former Cruiserweight Champion and 1996 Olympic Gold Medalist Vassiliy "The Tiger" Jirov (37-3-1, 31 KOs) is returning to boxing with the intention of regaining his cruiserweight world championship. The popular former champion is currently in training for a proposed September 17 bout at the Woodland Marriott in Woodland Hills, California. A fan favorite worldwide for his relentless come-forward attack and intense body punching ability, Jirov first made history when he defeated American team captain Antonio Tarver to win the Olympic light heavyweight gold medal in Atlanta in 1996.. He also received the prestigious Val Barker Cup for being the best fighter of the games.

It was there that he signed with American powerhouse promoter Top Rank and united with manager Ivaylo Gotzev.

Guided by Gotzev and Top Rank, "The Tiger" Jirov tore through his opposition on his way to taking his first world title in 1999 by stopping "King" Arthur Williams in the seventh round.

The fight, broadcast live on HBO, allowed Jirov to captivate audiences around the world and garnered him high praise.

Over the next five years, Jirov successfully defended four times, and brought credibility to a division that had been largely ignored for many years. After losing his title in an upset decision to James Toney (later voted the 2003 Fight of the Year), Jirov moved up to the heavyweight division where, despite not winning a major title, he clearly left a mark. No one will forget the battle he waged with then number-one contender "Baby" Joe Mesi.

After a few years of stop-and-go activity Jirov has now reunited with Gotzev (they parted ways just prior to the James Toney fight). The pair's record together stands at 32-0 with 27 knockouts.

"I am delighted to be working with Vassiliy again. His exciting, aggressive style is definitely missed in boxing," said Gotzev. "And pending California State Athletic Commission approval, you can see him back in action September 17 at the Woodland Marriott."

The plan, according to Gotzev, is to take some tune-up fights before making an attempt to regain his cruiserweight title. "There is no doubt in my mind that Vassiliy will be unified cruiserweight champion of the world."

The cruiserweight division is currently experiencing an upswing, hosting the likes of Tomas Adamek, David Haye, Ola Afolabi, and many up-and-coming European contenders.

Jirov is training at the 360 Fitness center in Reseda, California with Shadeed Suluki (who trains Gotzev's young fighters including sensational light heavyweight Ismayl Sillakh and middleweight David Tabatadze, both undefeated. "We are going to bring excitement to every fight and there are some great fights to be made at that weight. The Tiger is back!"

His opponent is currently TBA.



Orange, August 6, 2009 – It will certainly be “High Stakes” at the Omega Products International in Corona, California, on Friday, August 14th, when “El Maestro”, unbeaten junior welterweight standout Mauricio Herrera, puts his perfect pro record on the line against Seattle’s Jason Davis in the main event of Thompson Boxing Promotions’ latest hard-hitting show, which will also feature the highly-anticipated return of 140-pound contender Josesito Lopez.

Tickets to “High Stakes”, a five-bout card of world-class professional boxing featuring the rising stars of the sport, are priced at $75, $45, and $30, and may be purchased by calling 714-935-0900. Doors open at 6:30pm and the first bell is at 7:45pm.

Riverside’s Mauricio Herrera (11-0, 5 KOs) has been one of California’s most active fighters over the last two years, compiling a 6-0 record in 2008, and a 3-0 slate thus far in 2009. But the 29-year old “El Maestro” isn’t ready to stop conducting his fistic symphonies just yet, so he will be matched up with tough Seattle product Jason Davis (11-3, 3 KOs) in what is promising to be an exciting and competitive matchup

Unbeaten in nine of his last ten bouts, with the only loss being a highly controversial 10 round decision loss to Edgar Santana, a bout in which he dropped Santana twice, Josesito Lopez (24-3, 14 KOs) bounced back from that defeat with an eight round win over once beaten Patrick Lopez in April. Now eager to move back up the junior welterweight ranks, the 25-year old from Riverside will take on Escondido veteran Sergio De La Torre (11-11-3, 1 KO) in the six round co-main event.

An exciting Mexican battler who now makes his home in Indio, California, super bantamweight Jonathan “Diamante” Arias (15-3, 8 KOs) is looking to regain the form that saw him win his first 15 pro bouts before hitting a rough patch in bouts against Abner Mares and Javier Cintron. But he will not be in easy on August 14th as he squares off against hot prospect Khabir Suleymanov (7-0, 2 KOs) of Los Angeles in a six-round scrap.

Also on the card will be busy Jonathan Arrellano (2-0, 1 KO) from Ontario, CA, who will be making his third ring appearance in the span of only 4 weeks. He recently kayoed pro debutant Fernando Moreno on the undercard of Bradley vs. Campbell on August 1, and turned pro himself on July 17 in the same venue by beating Rufino Serrano to a decision, he will now face the roughed Hugo Ramos (2-1-1, 1 KO) from Palm Springs in a four round bout. A super bantamweight battle will open the show pitting highly-regarded Azusa Pacific University graduate, Walter “Schoolboy” Sarnoi (3-0, 2 KOs) of Monterey Park against LA veteran Jose Antonio Rico (5-8-1, 2 KOs).

Bouts subject to change.

Article posted on 06.08.2009

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