Tim Tszyu defends his WBO belt against Brian Mendoza in Australia on Oct. 15
Tim Tszyu will make the first defense of his WBO junior middleweight title against Brian Mendoza at a venue to be decided in Australia on October 15.
Tszyu (23-0, 17 knockouts), rated by The Ring at No. 1 in the junior middleweight division, is the current WBO “interim” titlist, but per the Puerto Rican-based sanctioning body, the current incumbent Jermell Charlo will be stripped once he steps inside the ring to face undisputed super middleweight king Canelo Alvarez in Las Vegas on September 30 and Tszyu will then be considered full champion.
Tszyu had been scheduled to face Charlo in on January 28, only for the American to break his hand. The 28-year-old the son of former undisputed junior welterweight champion Kostya Tszyu, grew tired waiting on a new date and seized the initiative fighting dangerous former beltholder Tony Harrison (TKO 9) in March. He then sent a message by stopping Carlos Ocampo (KO 1) in June.
Meanwhile, the upset-minded Mendoza (22-2, 16 KOs) is coming off a career best win over Sebastian Fundora (KO 7).
The No Limit event will take place on a Sunday in Australia to allow the show to be broadcast live in America on Showtime on the Saturday.
In chief support, world-rated Sam Goodman will look to continue his break out year when he faces experienced Miguel Flores in junior featherweight action.
Tszyu turned professional in December 2016. Since then, he has moved steadily through the ranks beating the likes of tough compatriot Dwight Richie (UD 10), former welterweight titleholder Jeff Horn (TKO 8), respected two-time world title challenger Dennis Hogan (TKO 5) and iron-jawed Takeshi Inoue (UD 12).
He made his American debut last year and had to get off the canvas in the opening round to best experienced Terrell Gausha (UD 12). He has since stopped Harrison and Ocampo.
Mendoza, The Ring’s No. 3 rated junior middleweight, won his first 18 fights before tasting defeat against Larry Gomez (SD 8). After beating Thomas LaManna (UD 10), he suffered another reverse, this time against Jesus Ramos (UD 10).
Unperturbed the 29-year-old Albuquerque native got back to winning ways before as a late substitute stunning former unified titleholder Jeison Rosario (KO 5) and, most recently, he scored a dramatic come from behind knockout over previously unbeaten Fundora.
Goodman (15-0, 7 KOs), rated by The Ring at No. 6 in the junior featherweight division, worked his way through the domestic scene in Australia before claiming regional belts, notably beating Richie Mepranum (TKO 6) and Juan Miguel Elorde (TKO 8).
However, he came to the fore when he bested former titlist TJ Doheny (UD 10) and, most recently, when he edged out previously unbeaten Ra’eese Aleem (SD 12) in an IBF title eliminator.
Flores (25-4-1, 12 KOs), who turned professional in 2009, moved through the ranks beating the likes of Alfred Tetteh (KO 2), Ruben Tamayo (UD 10) and Ryan Kielczweski (UD 10).
The 31-year-old Mexican lost back-to-back fights against Dat Nguyen (TKO 6) and Chris Avalos (RTD 5) in a disappointing 2017. After getting back in the win column he was selected to face WBA 130-pound titlist Leo Santa Cruz but lost a wide 12-round unanimous decision. Returned to featherweight and was stopped by Eduardo Ramirez (TKO 5). However, he is coming off a draw with Abner Mares (D 10) last year.
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