A potentially big-money, career-defining fight could be on the cards for Tim Czew if the recently promoted WBO junior middleweight champion is able to defeat Brian Mendoza this weekend on the Gold Coast.
Tszyu (23-0, 17KOs) will return to the scene of his June demolition of Carlos Ocampo, where he displayed power, precision and skill before flooring the Mexican after just 77 seconds. The dominant performance was expected to eventually lead to a highly-anticipated fight against Jermael Charlo for the American’s quartet of belts at 154 pounds.
“That guy, I’ll give it to him, and I’m right under him,” said Charlo after the win over Ocampo. “I got this interim belt, but I’m not satisfied. It’s not just the belt, I want the name Charlo on my wrist.”
Tszyu and Charlo were originally scheduled to fight in January, but those plans fell through when Charlo suffered a broken left hand during training camp. Midway through the year, the WBO mandated Charlo to fight Tszyu before September 30, but the bout again failed to pan out with Charlo opting instead to face Canelo Alvarez at supermiddleweight – a fight he would eventually lose by unanimous decision.
The WBO has since promoted Tszyu from interim champion to regular champion, and he will defend that strap and title for the first time this weekend. Australia already seems to have a lot going for it.
“If this Sunday could be Tim’s toughest test to date, it will be his biggest and best fight yet,” said No Limit Boxing CEO George Rose. to say Fox Sports. “Errol Spence, Terence Crawford, Canelo Alvarez…that’s what’s next for Tim Czew. There’s no bigger fight in boxing than pitting the world’s greatest pound-for-pound fighters against one another.”
“Charlo got his chance and he ran. He literally ran. He ran fighting Tim for the undisputed title and then he ran around the ring to the bank against Canelo.”
Tszyu will enter this fight as a substantial favorite with the oddsmakers, but Mendoza (22-2, 16KOs) should not be taken lightly.
“I’m expecting a fight and I expect Mendoza to test me more than any other fighter,” said Tszyu. “He’s got power in both hands and he’s shown he’s thrived being the underdog, so I doubt coming to Australia will bother him.”
The American most recently stunned the world by knocking out the highly skilled Sebastian Fundora in April to claim the WBC interim super welterweight title. Before that, he climbed the rankings by knocking out Jason Rosario in the fifth round in Minneapolis.
Mendoza fights outside the United States for the first time this weekend, but he’s not worried about the monumental task ahead. Instead, he believes that his powers can cause problems for Tszyu.
“Based on the information, I have more explosive shots,” Mendoza told media in Sydney earlier in the week. “The thing about me is I have power, but I’m not just a power puncher. I don’t go out there trying to get a shot. I’ll hit you for 12 rounds. That’s why I was called here. This is the country for this title fight in the first place. has
“I have a big chip on my shoulder. I have more to prove every time. I always hated to say it, but [back-to-back losses] I had something to go through, something I had to experience, because it was something impossible before I tasted defeat. It is unimaginable. You don’t really think it’s possible and then it crashes into reality.
“So when you can make it through that roller coaster of ups and downs, a lot comes out on top of it. And I had to really, really dig it, so that hunger really makes a difference here.”
Also on this weekend’s card is Australian featherweight Sam Goodman (15-0, 7KOs) who will look to remain undefeated when he takes on American Miguel Flores (25-4-1, 12 KOs).