Magsayo faces tall order vs WBC featherweight champion Russell

Published December 16, 2021, 1:58 PM

by Carlo Anolin

Undefeated Filipino boxer Mark Magsayo moved one step closer to his dream of becoming a world champion by taking on reigning WBC featherweight king Gary Russell Jr. next year.

Mark Magsayo (Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions)

First reported by BoxingScene, the Russell-Magsayo championship bout is set on January 22 next year with the final venue yet to be announced.

This marks, perhaps, Magsayo’s biggest fight of his seven-year professional boxing career and his first world title match.

READ: Mark Magsayo wants to challenge WBC champ Gary Russell Jr.

His knockout win against Mexican foe Julio Ceja in August this year earned him the rightful spot to challenge Russell, who has been inactive since his unanimous decision victory against Tugstsogt Nyambayar of Mongolia last February 2020.

The 26-year-old Leyte native boxer also bagged the WBO International featherweight title in the process.

Magsayo, who is currently training under legendary coach Freddie Roach at the Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles, California, remained unbeaten in 23 matches with 16 knockouts.

While it was Magsayo’s first world title match, the 33-year-old Russell will defend his WBC belt for the sixth straight time since capturing it last March 2015 against Jhonny Gonzalez of Mexico.

Russell, for his part, also has an impressive record of 31 wins on top of 18 KOs with his lone loss coming from Ukrainian boxing star Vasiliy Lomachenko in June 2014 via majority decision.

 
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