LAS VEGAS – Mexican rivals Isai “Gaga” Hernandez (11-2-2, 7 KOs) and Irving “Poderoso” Castillo (11-2, 7 KOs) are pumped up about fighting each other in the semifinals of the World Cup Boxing Series’ (WCBS) inaugural “4-Man Lightweight Tournament,” presented by Roy Jones Jr. (RJJ) Boxing Promotions.
The first RJJ Boxing on UFC FIGHT PASS of 2022 will be streamed live and exclusively on UFC FIGHT PASS®, the world’s leading digital subscription service for combat sports, from Palenque De La Expo in Ciudad Obregon, Sonora, Mexico. To sign-up for UFC FIGHT PASS, please visit www.ufcfightpass.com.
The Hernandez-Castillo semifinals winner will advance to the championship final this spring against the other semifinalist victor between pre-tournament favorite Luis “Koreano” Torres (14-0, 9 KOs) and Rodolfo “Rudy” Flores (14-5, 6 KOs) in an 8-rounder.
“Fighting in this tournament is good for me and my boxing career,” Hernandez said. “I’m very happy. I know he (Castillo) is in very good shape for every fight. He’s a good boxer, extremely tall for a lightweight. It’s a very tough fight for me.
“I’m a very strong brawler. I think it’s going to be a very tough fight. He will try to use his height and reach to keep his distance, but it’s my job to get inside and make him uncomfortable. We have been working so hard for this opportunity. I will do whatever it takes to win this fight.”
Castillo plans to take advantage of competing in this tournament, saying: “It’s a great opportunity for me to take part in this tournament. I’m very excited and look forward to making it to the championship and winning the WBC Latino title.
“I have seen him (Hernandez) fight a couple of times. Hernandez can handle a lot of punches and he likes to pressure his opponent every round. He’s a very tough fighter. I am very technical. I rarely waste any punches in there. It’s going to be a great fight with a lot of action. I have the qualities to win this fight impressively and that’s exactly what I intend to do.”
The WCBS’ “4-Man lightweight Tournament,” created by CEO Terry Hollan and matchmaker Guy Taylor, is sanctioned by the World Boxing Council (WBC). The winner will be crowned the WBC Latino Lightweight Champion, as well as positioned in the WBC’s top 15 ratings.
Semifinal’s action will be contested in 8-round bouts, 10 rounds for the championship final. The WCBS will also feature one “overtime” round, if needed, to declare a winner in the event of a draw upon the conclusion of the scheduled distance.
WCBS will also be offering a “Fight of the Night” and “Knockout” bonuses to each contestant through the duration of its “4-Man Lightweight Tournament.”
A non-tournament, title fight between decorated amateur boxer and undefeated professional, Quinton Randall (8-0, 2 KOs), and Ivan “Zurdo” Alvarez (31-13-1, 21 KOs) will also be streamed live UFC FIGHT PASS® opener.
Randall, fighting out of Houston, was a 2016 USA Nationals Championships gold medalist, as well as runner-up at the 2017 USA National Championships and Pan-American Games. Alvarez, the former WBC Youth Mundo Hispanic light welterweight champion, is upset minded for his 10-round bout versus Randall for the vacant WBC USNBC Silver Welterweight Championship.
Two other lightweight bouts are also being streamed on RJJ Boxing on UFC FIGHT PASS as Venezuelan knockout specialist Fradimil Macayo (15-1, 13 KOs) faces unbeaten Mexican Armando Ramirez Almanza (5-0-1,2 KOs) in an 8-round bout, while undefeated 19-year-old prospect Jorge “Jorgito” Cota (6-0, 4 KOs) – the youngest in the famed Mexican fightin’ Montiel family – meets Guatemalan challenger Rene “Kampana” de Leon Mazariegos (7-3, 4 KOs) in a scheduled 6-rounder.
Two matches off-UFC FIGHT PASS finds featherweight Nazario Castro Nieblas (8-2, 3 KOs) vs. 17-year-old Javier “Totopo” Carriello Montes (5-0, 3 KOs) in a 6-round battle of Mexican featherweights, and Houston super lightweight Emmanuel Rojas (3-0, 2 KOs) vs. Luis “El Faco” Angulo Bojorquez (4-4-1, 3 KOs), of Mexico.
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Founder, Executive Writer, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a passion for Combat Sports and also a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s also a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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