On Saturday, Gilberto Ramirez will return from an extended stint on the sidelines, due to a hand injury, for the first defense of his WBO super middleweight title against Max Bursak.
The bout is part of Top Rank Promotions’ world title tripleheader from the StubHub Center, Carson, California at 9 P.M ET/PT.
Ramirez (34-0, 24 knockouts) is clearly glad to put his injury issues behind him.
“It was very disappointing for me (to not defend) my title,” Ramirez told RingTV.com through trainer Hector Zapari, “because it was a very special moment for me (when I won the title) and my family, my team and for all Mexico. I waited a long time for the opportunity.
“But also I believe the injury came in a good moment. I had two years with the injury – the middle knuckle on my right hand – the surgery was successful and, thanks to God, my hand and knuckles are much better.”
The southpaw boxer-puncher is now geared up to face Bursak (33-4-1, 15 KOs).
“I hope it’s good and tough fight,” Ramirez said. “We are training very hard for this fight, as always. I know that, being a champion, there are no easy fights.
“Max Bursak is a strong solid fighter. He had a very good amateur career. He was on the national team of Ukraine and we know that Ukraine right now has very good fighters, world-class fighters. Bursak comes forward very strong and with very good conditioning, so we are preparing for the best Max Bursak.”
As usual, Ramirez initially prepared in his hometown of Mazatlán, where he finished therapy on his right hand, before moving camp to Los Angeles to fine tune for two months.
Zapari is unperturbed by the extended hiatus and believes his fighter is constantly improving.
“Gilberto Ramirez is a fighter that is always improving. He’s a very sharp fighter that is always learning. That’s why he improves in every fight,” explained the young trainer. “We expect a great performance from ‘Zurdo.’ He is hungrier than before. He will give a spectacular show to the fans in the L.A. area at StubHub Center.”
However, Zapari refused to look past the Ukrainian and is fully focused on the task at hand before looking at bigger fights.
“First of all, we have the fight with Bursak and we always respect the opponents,” he said. “Right now we don’t have anything on our mind, only Bursak.
“The plan is to keep Zurdo very busy this year, and we are targeting the best fights, with the best fighters…But, for the moment, Bursak is the only fight that matters.”
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