By James Slater
Photos: Scott J. Raven
Doncaster’s Jamie McDonnell, 20-2-1(9) will face unbeaten Mexican banger Julio Ceja, 24-0(22) at the Keepmoat Stadium this Saturday night. The Vacant IBF bantamweight title will be on the line in the fight that will go out live on Primetime pay-per-view in the U.K and on Mexico Televisa in Ceja’s homeland.
Trained by the legendary Nacho Beristain, 20-year-old Ceja is being looked at as the next big star to come out of Mexico. 27-year-old McDonnell, who has already won the British/Commonwealth and European titles, has the job of taking away Ceja’s unbeaten record and the IBF crown.
Today at The Keepmoat Stadium in Doncaster, the two fighters met face-to-face.
Promoter Dennis Hobson: “Welcome to Making History. This will be the first time ever that a kid from the great town of Doncaster will have fought for a world title. I believe in Jamie, I have done ever since he first walked into our gym. I believe in his abilities. This is a tough assignment for him, it’s going to be hard, but I believe he will win. Julio Ceja is said to be the next big thin to come out of Mexico and it will be a great fight. If you don’t enjoy the entertainment on Saturday – and we have a great card all the way – I’ll give you your money back!
“There is another title fight that same night (Hobson didn’t name it but he was referring to the Ricky Burns-Jose A Gonzalez fight set for Glasgow) but I think that fight, where you already know who is going to win, it’s just a matter of when, pales in comparison. I think this fight will be a genuine Fight of The Year candidate.”
Jamie McDonnell: “Thank you to Dennis, this is a great opportunity for me in my hometown, I don’t have to go abroad or anything, which is a massive advantage. Camp went great, we had sparring brought over from the States, and it’s all gone perfect. I’m ready and I will do all my fans from Doncaster proud. I’m going to grab this title with both hands.”
Julio Ceja (via his translator): “I thank God for this great opportunity. I am very well prepared with my trainer Nacho Beristain, who is one of the best trainers in Mexico. I am very confident. I am 100-percent ready. I know I have trained hard. I’m going to take the title home. I’m looking to put on a great show this Saturday.”