Joan Guzman vs Ali Funeka

LOS ANGELES, October 23 - HBO Boxing After Dark's historic first visit to Canada on Saturday, November 28, just got even more memorable as before Lucian Bute defends his world super middleweight title in a highly-anticipated rematch against Librado Andrade, the rugged Ali Funeka takes on two-division world champion Joan Guzman who looks to win his third world title in a 12 round bout for the vacant IBF lightweight title. "Everyone knows what a great fight Bute vs. Andrade II is and now we've got an equally intriguing co-main event with Funeka and Guzman," said Oscar de la Hoya, President of Golden Boy Promotions. "Guzman has long been established as one of boxing's best, but Funeka is a rising star who will make Joan fight every minute of every round. This is a fight that could steal the show on November 28.."

"We are extremely proud to be bringing two world title bouts to Quebec City," said Jean Bedard, president of Groupe Sportscene/ InterBox. "Thanks to our partners, Golden Boy Promotions and HBO, as this will be without question one of the biggest boxing events in Canadian history."

Bute vs. Andrade II is presented by Golden Boy Promotions and InterBox, with Funeka vs. Guzman being presented in association with Gary Shaw Productions and Cedric Kushner's Gotham Boxing. Both bouts will be held at the Colisee Pepsi in Quebec City, Canada and will air live on HBO's Boxing After Dark beginning at 10:00pm ET/PT.

East London's Ali Funeka (30-2-2, 25 KO's) built a well-earned reputation back home in South Africa with his imposing 6 foot 1 frame, exciting style and punching power. Yet despite his victories over world-class opposition such as Zahir Raheem, it was his 12 round battle with Nate Campbell in February that truly showed the world what Funeka could do. Despite losing the bout via majority decision, Funeka stamped his name on the world map and he plans on doing it again this November against Joan Guzman.

"I respect Joan Guzman and everything he's accomplished, but he's too small to deal with me," said Funeka. "I will overpower him, send him back to 130 pounds and show him how true lightweights fight."

A 1996 Olympian with over 300 amateur wins, Joan Guzman (29-0, 17 KO's) is widely considered to be the greatest fighter ever to hail from the Dominican Republic. It's a distinction the 33-year-old takes seriously, as evidenced by the world titles he has held in the junior featherweight and junior lightweight divisions. The owner of victories over the likes of Javier Jauregui, former world champions Agapito Sanchez, Jorge Rodrigo "La Hiena" Barrios and current world champion Humberto Soto, Guzman will look to celebrate his 30th professional victory by winning the lightweight championship on November 28.

"This is my first fight in Canada and I've heard how great the fans are, so I plan on giving them a show this November," said Guzman. "A third world title means a lot to me and I plan on leaving everything in the ring in order to take that belt home with me."

More information on the highly-anticipated doubleheader will be announced shortly. For more information, please visit,

Article posted on 24.10.2009

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