Williams-Matanao: IBF eliminator set for March 5, Douglas-Soliman co-features
Undefeated super welterweight contender Julian “J-Rock” Williams and once-beaten Italian Marcello Matano will square off in a 12-round IBF eliminator for the No. 1 ranking at 154-pounds in the main event of SHOWTIME BOXING: SPECIAL EDITION on Saturday, March 5, live on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/PT) from Sands Bethlehem Events Center in Bethlehem, Pa.
In the co-feature, fast-rising middleweight contender Antoine Douglas will take on former world champion Sam Soliman in a 10-round middleweight bout. In the opening bout of the telecast, hard-hitting prospect Tony Harrison will face veteran former world title challenger Fernando Guerrero in a 10-round super welterweight contest.
“This upcoming fight will be the biggest fight of my career,” Williams said. “I’m chomping at the bit to get back out there. I am taking my opponent very seriously and I refuse to let Marcello Matano stop me from being a world champion.”
“This is a dream come true,” said Matano. “I’ve been working for my whole life for a real opportunity to make to the top level and I will not let Julian Williams take it away. What will happen when Williams has to go to the championship rounds? Will he be ready? I know for sure that I will. This is the opportunity of a lifetime and I will do all I can to grab it.”
“Facing a former world champion like Sam Soliman is a great opportunity for me,” Douglas said. “The plan has always been to keep moving forward, and to do it successfully. This is that next step, and I’m ready for it. I’ve grown and learned so much fighting on ShoBox and it’s a beautiful thing to continue to progress and move to the next level.”
“This is an important fight for me,” said Soliman. “I had three opportunities on the table and I chose Douglas believing it to be a better fight for ranking, and it’s a challenge I’m excited to take on. From what I have seen, Douglas is a very talented fighter, which will make for a good fight. I am in great shape and looking forward to fight night.”
“I’m excited and eager to showcase my abilities to the world again,” said Harrison. “I’d advise fans to arrive early because I don’t plan to be in the ring long. I’m knocking this guy out. I know Guerrero is coming in with a chip on his shoulder and I can’t overlook him. I brought my uncle into camp and I think that’s going to give me the edge that I’ve needed to get over the hump. I’m putting the whole division on notice!”
“It’s warrior time,” said Guerrero. “We are going to have a war. This is going to be non-stop action. This fight will lead to big things for me. I’m used to fighting guys that are bigger than I am. I’m at my more natural weight and I’m looking to do great things in this division.”
“I’m thrilled to promote this great show on March 5,” said Marshall Kauffman of King’s Promotions. “This is a great card from top to bottom with some future champions looking to show the world that they are ready for the next level. I am honored to have Julian Williams headline this card. He put on an explosive performance in his last bout at the Sands and I am sure he will be looking to do the same on March 5.”
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by King’s Promotions, are priced at $100, $75 and $45, not including applicable service charges and taxes and are on sale now. Tickets are available HERE at www.ticketmaster.com. To charge by phone call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000.