Filipino boxer Reymart Gaballo is all ready to take on Puerto Rico's Emmanuel Rodriguez for the WBC interim bantamweight title.
The bout will serve as the main event of "Showtime Boxing: Special Edition" on Sunday morning (Manila time) at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.
Both fighters didn't have trouble making the bantamweight limit Saturday, with each of them tipping the scales at 117.6 pounds.
Although the Polomolok town, South Cotabato native owns the better record (23-0), Rodriguez (19-1) is a former world champion.
“I’m so focused on this fight. It’s been a year and a week since my last fight so I’ve just been in the gym, even when I didn’t have a fight in place. I’m always in shape and training at all times," Gaballo said a day before the weigh-in.
Gaballo, who once held the WBA interim bantamweight belt, was forced to vacate that crown after failing to defend it for some time.
The fight against Rodriguez might just be the 24-year-old's ticket to the big league.
"I want to be considered one of the best. You have Naoya Inoue, Nonito Donaire and John Riel Casimero. Those are the guys I envision fighting in the future. I know them and have sparred with them so I’m excited to be included in that group of names,” said the heavy-handed Filipino.
Rodriguez, for his part, is looking to rebound from his second-round knockout defeat to Inoue.
The 28-year-old was supposed to take on Nonito Donaire Jr. but the Filipino 4-division former world champion was sidelined by a positive COVID-19 test.
Rodriguez will be forced to make adjustments on the fly against Gaballo, who accepted the fight on short notice.
“We’re prepared for whatever comes. If it goes 12 rounds, I’m ready for all 12. He’s going to have his game plan and we’re going to have ours, and I’m confident that I’m going to come away with the win,” the Puerto Rican fighter said.