(Laval) No need to remind them: Mathieu Germain and Steven Wilcox are at a crossroads. The two pugilists know that the rest of their course will have very different paces depending on whether or not they win their face-to-face on Thursday, at Place Bell.
“It’s definitely a big fight for both of us at 32 and 33,” said Ontarian Wilcox (24-3-1, 7 KOs). You lose it and you will have to take a few steps back. You win it and you will find yourself in the world top 10. […] In this case, your next fight may not be for a world title, but it will be very meaningful. »
This world top 10 is what the conquest of the Intercontinental belt of the International Boxing Federation (IBF) super-lightweight, which will be at stake in this duel, promises. Germain (21-2-1, 9 KOs) sees no other way out than to emerge victorious from this confrontation.
“This fight is happening because I have a good track record, I’ve faced good opponents in my career. I’m in good shape, I’m just a young veteran.
“I still feel like making sacrifices. […] Whoever wins this fight, I’m going to do what I have to do. I don’t see Steven Wilcox as a threat. He is the underdog in this fight. »
His trainer, Stéphan Larouche, however, agrees: it is better to win this clash than to take the longest route.
“A defeat is not dramatic, it always depends on how it goes. […] But it is true that in theory, the winner will have a more interesting, but very difficult path. The loser is going to have to tell himself that he’s going to look elsewhere or have better paying fights: the guys are going to have good records, the phone is going to ring. Whether it’s for elimination fights or last minute substitutions.
“You have to remember that there are two goals in this: to become or world champion or to make money. If you don’t pass the first, you have to do the second. If you can’t pass the second one, get yourself another job! »
Adoptive Montrealer Jessica Camara (10-3, 2 KOs) will also fight for the IBF International Welterweight title against Mexican Karla Ramos Zamora (9-9-1, 2 K.-O.).
While Zamora’s record seems lackluster, Camara warns that in the ladies, “tough” fights happen faster than in the men.
“She’s a tough opponent. She always goes straight ahead and throws a lot of punches,” said the International Boxing Organization (IBO), World Boxing Association (WBA) and World Boxing Organization (WBO) title contender. against Kali Reis in 2021, a fight she lost by split decision.
“Female boxers, we’re not afraid to put a loss on our record,” she added. We accept all the fights and we go full throttle. »
“Women accept more 50-50 fights,” noted her promoter, Lou DiBella, co-promoter of Thursday’s event with Groupe Yvon Michel. Zamora’s record is misleading, as several of her opponents went on to become world champions. »
Four of them actually became champions. A few others have fought one or more world title fights. The combined record of his opponents is also very respectable, at 139-50-15.
This fight will be one of three women’s fights of the evening, which will also have the appearance of a Canadian national team convention with Camara, Caroline Veyre and Amanda Galle entering the ring.
Veyre (2-0) will face Anaëlle Angerville (5-1-1), while Galle (7-0-1, 1 KO) will face Lorena Cruz Aispuro (4-2).
Irishman Joe Ward (8-1, 4 KOs) will try to bring joy to his St. Patrick’s Day festivities against Mexican Mario Andrade Rodriguez (7-0, 4 KOs). Finally, the Italian Yoel Angeloni (1-0) will be opposed to Alexander Calixto (1-1, 1 K.-O.).
All of these fights will take place before the main course, the IBF light heavyweight elimination bout between Jean Pascal (36-6-1, 20 KOs) and Germany’s Michael Eifert (11-1 , 4 KOs). The winner will become the mandatory contender for the title held by Montrealer Artur Beterbiev. The first bell will ring at 7 p.m.