Mathews warned: There’s no answer to a fighter who hits as hard as Barroso!

Rosie Cohe / Showtime

Greg Cohen Promotions proudly announces that on Saturday, April 18, unbeaten southpaw slugger Ismael Barroso (17-0-2, 16 KOs) will face UK veteran Derry Matthews (37-9-2, 20 KOs) for the Interim WBA Lightweight Championship.

The pair will meet at the Echo Arena in Matthews’ hometown of Liverpool, England, as the main event of a night of boxing presented by Frank Warren’s Queensberry Promotions.

31-year-old Barroso, one of the hardest punchers in the division, hails from El Tigre, Venezuela, and was last seen making his American television debut with an impressive TKO over Issouf Kinda. The eye-opening victory won Barroso the NABO and NABA Lightweight Championships.

The fight against Matthews is being mandated by the WBA because of an ongoing illness to current champion Richar Abril that has rendered him unable to train. Abril will still be the “Champion in Recess.”

31-year-old Matthews has held a slew of European titles in his 12-year career. He will enjoy a distinct advantage in experience over the cement-fisted South American.

“I am very excited Ismael is getting this opportunity and despite the short notice, he is a tireless worker in the gym and will be more than ready. He is eager to join Jorge Linares as a Venezuelan Lightweight World Champion,” said Greg Cohen. “Matthews is a good fighter, but there are really no answers to a fighter who can hit as hard as Barroso. GCP will have another world champion in its roster after Saturday night.”