Jose Sulaiman WBC Tournament In Toronto Postponed

The Real Deal Boxing and Lee Baxter Promotions regret to announce that the Jose Sulaiman WBC World Invitational Tournament, scheduled to take place this Saturday, August 25th in Toronto, Canada, has been postponed due to visa issues.

“We were forced to make the very difficult decision late last night to postpone the event due to learning that, despite our best efforts, several of the tournament’s international fighters would not be granted visas to enter Canada.”, explained Eric Bentley, COO of The Real Deal Boxing.

“While we worked tirelessly to resolve the issue down to the last possible minute, and we could have made arrangements to move forward with revised tournament bouts, it was very important to us that the 4 semi-finalists, Van Heerden, Lawson, Solomon and Santana, not lose the opportunity they rightfully earned by winning in the quarter-finals due to issues out of their control.”

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“We look forward to announcing the date and location of the rescheduled event in the coming weeks and we sincerely thank the boxing fans of Toronto for their support and their understanding of what was a necessary, but very difficult decision for The Real Deal Boxing and our partners at Lee Baxter Promotions to make especially considering the support the city has shown the event.”

Tickets can be refunded at the point of purchase.


Real Deal Sports and Entertainment and Lee Baxter Promotions in association with Louisville Top Knotch and the World Boxing Council, are proud to announce the undercard of the semi-final round of The Jose Sulaiman WBC World Invitational Tournament which will take place at Toronto’s famed lakeside amphitheater, Budweiser Stage on Saturday, August 25th.

Making his professional debut will be 2016 Olympian and one of Canada’s most decorated amateurs of all time, Arthur Biyarslanov who will take on Mexico’s Jair Baltazar (1-1) in a 4 round junior welterweight contest.

Biyarslanov was the 2015 Pan American Games Gold Medal Winner which took place in his hometown of Toronto and he achieved national stardom when he represented Canada in the 2016 Olympics. Now training in Montreal, Biyarslanov will return to Toronto to begin his highly anticipated professional career.

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One of Quebec’s most popular and accomplished fighters, two time world title challenger, Dierry Jean (29-2-1, 20 KO) will return to the ring after a 2 year lay off in a 6 round welterweight contest against rugged Mexican veteran, Abraham Gomez(28-16-1, 13 KO).

In an exciting crossroads showdown, Alex Dilmaghani (17-1, 6 KO), who is on the verge of a world ranking, will face Halifax’s Tyson Cave (31-3, 13 KO), who is on 7 fight win streak since his controversial split decision loss for the WBA Interim World Title, in 10 round super featherweight bout.

One of Toronto’s most promising local prospects, Kane Heron (11-0-1, 5 KO) will return to the ring for his third fight of 2018 as he looks to expand his growing following in the toughest fight of his career against Argentina’s Maximiliano Scalzone (16-2-1, 12 KO) in an 8 round welterweight contest.

Quebec’s most talked about young fighter, Mazlum Akdeniz (5-0, 2 KO) will continue his fast tracked career against Mexico’s Javier Pena (13-11-1, 6 KO) in what will be Akdeniz’s 4th fight of the year in a 6 round welterweight contest.

By popular demand, in a rematch of one the most exciting bouts in Canada’s women’s boxing history, Toronto native, Shelly Barnett (4-0-1) will face Mexico’s Guadalupe Rodriguez (3-1-1). Their action packed first contest in Toronto ended in a controversial draw this past April and both 118 pounders have agreed to go at it again.

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Ukraine’s 3-time national amateur champion, Oleksandr Shytyi will make his professional debut against, Calgary’s Markhaile Wedderburn (2-3, 2 KO) in a 4 round cruiserweight bout.

Neeraj Goyat (9-2-2), the WBC Asian Welterweight Champion hailing from India will make his North American debut and defend his title against an opponent to be named in a 6 round bout.

Ioannis Birmpilis (3-0), a young fighter developing a large following in Toronto’s Greek community, will face an opponent to be named in a 6 round junior middleweight bout.

Last but not least, The Jose Sulaiman World Invitational Tournament’s alternate fighter, the highly regarded, heavy hitting Russian, Radzhab Butaev (9-0, 8 KO) will fight an opponent to be named in an 8 round welterweight contest. Butaev, who joins the tournament in association with DBE and Fight Promotions, will be elevated to the tournament if any of the tournament’s 4 semi-finalists fail to make weight or suffer a last minute injury. Butaev is replacing the tournament’s original alternate, Sergey Lubkovich, who suffered an injury forcing him to withdrawal from the tournament.

“This is hands down the best undercard I have matched in my entire promotional career.”, explains an excited Lee Baxter, President of Lee Baxter Promotions.

“It’s a who’s who of Canadian fighters, from prospects to contenders, all in competitive fights on literally the biggest stage of their careers. Several of these fighters have massive followings and to put them together on one event will create an electric atmosphere. This truly will be the boxing event of the summer in Canada, and, as the first fight card to take place at such a legendary and beautiful concert venue, it will be a historic night in Toronto boxing history.”


The Jose Sulaiman World Invitational Tournament, named after the late president of the WBC, is a single elimination bracket style tournament created by The Real Deal Boxing where 8 high level welterweights, representing different countries, compete over the course of three events to declare one winner who will be in position to fight for the WBC World Welterweight Title in 2019.

Saturday, August 25th in Toronto will be the semi-final round of the tournament and will see the quarterfinal winners face each other in co-main events when South Africa’s Chris Van Heerden (26-2-1), #22 in the world, takes on Ghana’s Fredrick Lawson (27-1), #15 in the world, and the USA’s Brad Solomon (28-1), #23 in the world, faces Mexico’s Francisco Santana (25-6-1), #13 in the world.

Besides the exciting action in the ring, the Jose Sulaiman World Invitational Tournament is receiving glowing praise from fans, media and athletic commissions for the initiatives it’s taking to make long overdue changes in the sport in three distinct categories.

Judging & Scoring

To combat one of boxing’s biggest issues, inexplicable if not downright awful judging and scorecards, the tournament features 5 judges as opposed to the regular 3. One for each side of the ring as well as one judge who watches the fight on a monitor with no sound. Halfway through the fight, scorecards are announced to the audience and the fighters so everyone is aware of how the 5 judges are viewing the bout. The first round of the tournament did not have a single controversial decision in 5 back to back 10-round fights and several fights had distinct momentum shifts after the cards were announced at the half way point. The Real Deal Boxing also developed a standardized scoring system that is given to judges in advance which clearly defines the way a round should be scored to eliminate any subjectivity from the equation. Last but not least, any bouts that end in a draw immediately head to a 11th and final round that judges must give to one of the fighters.

Instant Replay

A nearly universal request from fighters, fans and the entire boxing community, the tournament uses instant replay. In the case of a controversial or potentially wrong call, the incident in question is reviewed in between rounds, allowing officials to get it right every time. Instant replay helps assure the bout’s outcome and scorecards are never affected by a missed call, be it a slip ruled as a knockdown or a cut from an accidental headbutt ruled as punch or vice versa.

Fighter Safety

In the tournament’s first round fighters were required to undergo a pre fight MRI and post fight MRI (on the following day of the fight) regardless of the bout’s outcome. In addition, The Real Deal Boxing has it’s own internal team of physicians to oversee the health and safety of all the fighters on their roster, helping to address the inconsistent medical standards brought on by differing requirements from each regulatory authority. The expense of these additional medical and safety requirements is covered entirely by The Real Deal Boxing.

The Jose Sulaiman WBC World Invitational Tournament takes place Saturday, August 25th at Budweiser Stage in Toronto, Canada. Doors open at 5:30 pm and the first fight starts at 6:00 pm. Tickets are on sale now at and start at $50. For more information visit The Real Deal Boxing and Lee Baxter Promotions.

The Jose Sulaiman World Invitational Tournament is proudly sponsored by Venum Fight Gear and Fight Wear.