Tuesday, May 30, 2023  |


Julio Ceja awaits world title shot, returns against Franklin Manzanilla on Saturday

Fighters Network

It will be a while before junior featherweight contender Julio Ceja will fight for the WBC title. In the meantime, the Mexican contender will remain active in a stay-busy fight on Saturday night.

Ceja will face Franklin Manzanilla in a 12-round bout at the Teatro Moliere in Mexico City. The fight will air live on Televisa.

The 25-year-old Ceja (32-2, 28 knockouts) is the mandatory challenger for the WBC belt held by Rey Vargas, who defeated Azat Hovhannisyan in a voluntary title defense on May 12. During the fight, Vargas suffered a nasty cut over his left eye that will leave him out of action for several weeks.

In his last bout on Nov. 25, Ceja, who resides in the Mexico City area, won a 12-round unanimous decision over Colombia’s Breilor Teran. Six months before the Teran fight, Ceja knocked out former world bantamweight titleholder Anselmo Moreno.

Ceja’s two losses have come to British star Jamie McDonnell and Hugo Ruiz.

Manzanilla (17-4, 16 KOs) has won seven of his last eight bouts, with the only blemish being an eight-round split decision loss to fringe contender Belmar Preciado.

The most notable bout for the Caracas, Venezuela fighter was a split decision loss to contender Jose Sanmartin in October 2014.

Flyweights Ibeth Zamora Silva (28-6, 12 KOs) and Melissa McMorrow (10-6-3, 1 KO) will square off in a 10-round bout for the vacant WBC female flyweight title.

Lourdes Juarez (23-2, 3 KOs) will face Jacky Calvo (11-2-2, 1 KO) in a 10-round bout between Mexico City flyweights.


Francisco A. Salazar can be reached by email at [email protected] on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing.


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