On April 23, 2016, boxing Superstar and undefeated unified World Middleweight Champion Gennady Golovkin (34-0, 31 KOs) will defend his titles at the Forum in Los Angeles against undefeated mandatory challenger Dominic Wade (18-0, 12 KOs) in the Main Event and then you have the consensus #1 Pound for Pound fighter in the world and WBC Flyweight World Champ Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez (44-0, 38 KOs) battling McWilliams Arroyo (16-2, 14 KOs) of Puerto Rico. Both bouts will be televised Live on HBO’s World Championship Boxing beginning at 10 p.m. PT.
The Golovkin vs. Wade event is being promoted by K2 Promotions, GGG Promotions in association with TGB Promotions while the Gonzalez vs. McWilliams bout is presented by K2 Promotions in association with Teiken Promotions and PR Best Boxing Promotions.
Take note we didn’t have to mention the above gentlemen were fighting for the male version of these titles. Soon after the Triple GGG announcement came the following addendum that the five promoters of this Super Fight were adding four young ladies to the undercard. Surely this news has major significance. It certainly did for the females trying to survive in the sport. When was the last time we saw this happened? No we don’t have to go all the way back to the Christy Martin/Laila Ali days but it is a very rare occurrence. Yes, as an added drawing card, the five male promoters decided to elicit the help of the women, and as a consequence four of our local gals will get an opportunity to showcase their talents. The four combatants include 26 year-old Amaris “Diamond Girl” Quintana from San Diego (9-2, 1 KO) who will be facing 22 year-old Kenia Enriquez (15-1-0, 7 KOs) of Tijuana, the former WBO Female light flyweight world champion. Plus they have 23 year-old Seniesa Estrada (5-0, 1 KO) from East Los Angeles battling Selene Lopez (3-4-3, 1 KO) from Mexicali. It’s a given, all four boxers will do an admirable job of representing the females in this sport.
As convoluted as this may sound, both Quintana and Enriquez will be throwing extra hard in their match. How so? Quintana and Enriquez are good friends and have on many occasions sparred against each another. Since they know each other’s strengths and weaknesses, they will certainly be out to exploit them. And yes, both will easily set aside their friendship as soon as that opening bell sounds. That’s why most insiders predict this fight will be brutal. Just as in the fight scenes between Antonio Banderas and Woody Harrelson, the actors who played the lead roles in the 1999 movie Play it to the Bone, this will be a war. In the movie, Banderas and Harrelson were the best of friends and yet when they had to compete against each other for a title shot, all that buddy-pal stuff went out the window.
Outside of the ring, Quintana is one of those gals who carries a heart that never hates, a smile that never fades. Inside the ring, she goes full throttle no matter who she’s facing; the same way she rides her horse at a full gallop. The same way she works out at either of the gyms she frequents – the CrossFit Oracle or the Bound Boxing Academy in Chula Vista. She’s always going at maximum speed.
To win Quintana will need to cut off the ring, avoid being peppered by Enriquez’s stiff jab, be quicker and get inside to throw the hard shots to the body, land the surprise left hooks with an occasional all or nothing left uppercut. To avoid being worn down she’ll need an assist from a conscientious referee who will need to prevent not only the constant holding but Enriquez’s attempts to push down on Quintana’s head or put her body weight on Quintana. Quintana’s most critical need – having sufficient power behind every punch.
Quintana’s opponent, Kenia Enriquez, is also an over-achiever. For example, we have the story of how she got started in boxing. Her dad, Gustavo Pacheko Enriquez, a well respect boxing coach, did not want either of his daughters to box. But Kenia kept insisting and always followed him to the gym. To discourage her, he had her spar with the toughest gal in the gym, a much bigger girl. His enforcer beat the crap out of Kenia. The fact she got her ass kicked, enticed her even more. It wasn’t long before they had a rematch and Kenia came out on top. It was the same way with every sport, every game. She’d try something, maybe lose at first, and then she’d continued on until she mastered it.
In addition to being taller and weighing several pounds heavier then Quintana, Enriquez is also rugged. On a regular basis, she competes in those Baja California 10K runs. Together with fellow boxer Sandra Robles, sister Tania, the three are always training, always sparring and presently she’s working on her second annual Kenia Enriquez Baja California Female Amateur Boxing Tournament to be held March 26 and 27.
For Enriquez to win, she’ll need to keep that jab in Quintana’s face and occasionally unload with the combinations and big overhand rights. If Quintana ducks under her jab, Quintana’s head will be the target of her right uppercut or perhaps an illegal punch to the back of the head. As a last resort she can grab and hold to prevent any retribution from Quintana. With her hard jab slowing Quintana down, it will be just a matter of time before Enriquez can take full control of the fight with her combinations.
Female Welterweight Champion of the World, Cecilia Braekhus
The 34 year-old, undisputed, undefeated Female Welterweight Champ of the World, Cecilia Braekhus, returned to the ring on February 27 after a year of inactivity to comprehensively outbox, outmuscle Montevideo, Uruguay’s Chris “El Bombón Asesino” Namus (21-3, 8 KOs), at the Gerry Weber Stadium in Halle, Germany. Despite her inactivity due to an injury and recuperation, Cecilia had an amazing performance, showing why she’s so unbeatable. Even though the tough Namus hung in there till the final bell, the judges’ scorecards clearly reflected Braekhus’ dominance awarding her every round: 100-90 as The First Lady of Boxing improved her record to 28-0, 7 KOs.
In other news, Guadalupe “Lupita” Martinez defended her WBC super-flyweight belt for the first time defeating Celeste Belém “Muñeca” González by an unanimous decision. The judges’ scores read 100-90, 98-92 and 99-91, all in favor of the champion.
Mikaela Lauren (26-3, 11 KOs) who spent considerable time training here in San Diego at The Arena in Point Loma signed a long-term promotional contract with Europe’s leading boxing promoter Team Sauerland. The WBC Female World Super Welterweight Champion now joins Team Sauerland’s ever growing stable of Swedish stars including Erik Skoglund, Klara Svensson, Anthony Yigit, Oscar Ahlin and Otto Wallin.
With her new deal, Lauren can now look forward to some substantial paydays, and one will likely include a rematch with the female pound-for-pound number one Braekhus plus a domestic showdown with Team Sauerland stable-mate Klara Svensson.
‘‘When I fought Cecilia, I was just a novice,” said Lauren. “I’d only had six fights, but now I’m a World-class fighter and I’ve had 29 fights and I know what the game is about. I know I can beat Cecilia, especially with the help of Sauerland.
“The fight against Klara (Svensson) would be great for Sweden. At this moment we are the two biggest female fighters in the country and I’m sure it’s a fight everyone would love to see. I would need to move down a weight class and she would need to move up, but I’m sure this could happen. Klara calls herself the Swedish Princess, but after I beat her, I want to be known as the Swedish Queen.’’
The 28 year-old Zulina “La Loba” Muñoz (45-1-2, 27 KOs), the stunning blonde from Mexico City, Distrito Federal, by way of San Vincente Chicoloapan, will be defending her WBC super flyweight title on Saturday, March 12, against the extremely confidant 41 year-old Christina “Irish eyes are smiling” McMahon from County Monaghan, Ireland. After winning her first seven fights, three by knockout, McMahon lost a 10 round unanimous decision to Alicia Ashley in October. Saturday’s fight will take place at the Josue Neri Santos Gym in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico.
Our sources in Mexico City are also confidant and predicted: “In this “México vs Ireland” fight, the Mexican champion will move fluidly and hit Ms. McMahon with explosive power. It won’t be pretty.”
On March 18, 2016, Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico will host the first World Boxing Council Female heavyweight championship. In this one, you have the undefeated Alejandra “La Tigre” Jiménez (5-0-0, 4 KOs) from Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico, trying to knock off the current heavyweight champ and veteran of 16 years Martha Elena “Shadow” Salazar (13-4, 3 KOs) of San Francisco, Calif. who won the title back in 2014 by defeating Tanzee Daniel. Jiménez will enjoy both a two inch height and two inch reach advantage.
The Tiger vs. Shadow title fight will be held at the International “Oasis Arena Cancun.” The show is being presented by “Cancun Boxing”, “Golden Boy Promotions” and “Boxing Time Promotions.” Take note of the involvement by Oscar De La Hoya and his Golden Boy Promotions – it appears he is making good on the promise he made at the recent Women’s WBC National Convention to get himself involved in promoting Female Boxing.
As you can see from this photo taken at a recent Press Conference, Jimenez, who is the challenger, is in excellent shape and poised to get the victory. She tipped the scales at 100 kg 300 grams which when converted to pounds comes to 221.12 pounds.
On the same Friday, March 18, light flyweight, 22 year-old southpaw Sandra “Perla Negra” Robles (12-2, 6 KOs) will be a headliner on a fight card at the Grand Hotel in Tijuana with an opponent TBA. At one point, Robles had gone three years without a loss until losing to Anabel Ortiz (17-3) on September 5, 2015.
There is also talk of the 27 year-old Yessica “Kika” Chavez (26-4-3, 4 KOs) wanting a rematch against the WBC light flyweight champ Ibeth “La Roca” Zamora, or perhaps a fight with the Diamond champion Ava Knight.
Chavez’s promoter, Reginaldo Kuchle, who recently praised the excellence of his fighter’s unanimous decision win over Vanesa Taborda, a fight that drew 7,500 fans, said, “The time is right for Chavez to showcase her superiority.”
In 2015, Ibeth Zamora defended her title three times (once again San Diego’s Jolene Blackshear) and now has a fight scheduled for Saturday, March 19th, versus Mari Ando in Toluca, Mexico. At his point Zamora has wins over both Yessica Chavez and Ava Knight.
On Friday, March 11, the WBC and WBA have their 35 year-old featherweight champion, Argentinian Edith Soledad Matthysse (14-7-1, 1 KO) up at the Shaw Conference Center in Edmonton, Alberto, Canada to defend her titles against the 33 year-old Jelena Mrdjenovich who is from Edmonton, Alberto, Canada. In this much anticipated rematch, Mrdjenovich, who had won seven in a row prior to her unanimous decision loss to Matthysse in Argentina on August 1, 2015, will now hold homecourt advantage.
“This is another big challenge,” said Matthysse. “Even though I clearly beat her last August, Mrdjenovich is an exceptionally tough rival. I clearly remember how she predicted she was going to knock me out. And I’m going to do just that, all over again!”
Mrdjenovich (35-10-1, 19 KOs) vowed, “This time it will be completely different. I’ve got I so many things to prove to Matthysse. Back then I had problems in my training camp. Now I’m going to make history. She achieved the best performance of her life and I the worst. I will do everything to be champion again.”
So, there you have it, just a sampling of the active females who are certainly putting in the same effort as their male counterparts. Addendum: Below, we’ve added the video from Friday night’s thriller between Mrdjenovich and Matthysse in Canada.