By Ron Jackson
Ali Funeka will have his second crack at the IBF lightweight belt when he meets Joan Guzman from the Dominican Republic for the vacant belt in Quebec, Canada on November 28. In February this year, the 31-year-old Funeka (30-2-2, 25 KOs) was outpointed by Nate Campbell when challenging for the IBF and WBO belts. Funeka who is now managed by Butityi Konki and trained by Vuyani and Dudu Bungu faces possibly the toughest fight of his career against Guzman, 33, who fights out of Brooklyn, New York and is unbeaten in 20 fights with 17 wins inside the distance.
Guzman a former WBO super bantam and super featherweight champion has fought at a much higher level than the South African and holds wins over top fighters like Agapito Sanchez, Fernando Beltran, Terdsak Jandaeng, Jorge Barrios and Humberto Soto.
Meanwhile in the next few days there are some interesting world title fights coming up, with Luis Concepcion facing Roberto Leyva for the WBA interim flyweight title at the Arena Roberto Duran in Panama City on Thursday and on Saturday WBA super middleweight champion Mikkel Kessler will be defending his belt against Andre Ward at the Oracle Arena in Oakland California.
Also on Saturday Universum Box-Promotion’s present a world title tripleheader on at the Sparkassen Arena in Kiel, Germany.
The three world title fights feature the cruiserweight showdown between unbeaten former WBO light heavyweight champion Zsolt Erdei (30-0; 17) and WBC cruiserweight champion Giacobbe Fragomeni (26-1-1; 10) plus WBC interim super featherweight champion Humberto Gutierrez (26-1-1; 19) defends his belt against Vitali Tajbert (17-1).
Super middleweight contenders Dimitri Sartison (25-1; 16) and Stjepan Bozic (23-3; 14) meet for the vacant WBA belt that was vacated when Mikkel Kessler was named WBA super champion.
At the Casino Rama in Ontario, Canada Mervin Sonsona defends his WBO junior bantamweight belt against Alejandro Hernandez and in Santé Fe, Argentina, Marcos Maidana and William Gonzalez clash in a WBA interim junior welterweight fight.