Charlotte’s First Professional Boxing Match Is Coming
A few notes from around the boxing world:
• Team Sauerland announced that super middleweight contender George Groves (21-3, 16 KOs), 27, of England, has an opponent for his Jan. 30 fight: Italy’s Andrea Di Luisa. They will meet at the Copper Box in London, Groves’ hometown. Groves has lost three shots at 168-pound world titles: twice by knockout to countryman Carl Froch and by split decision to Badou Jack on Sept. 12 in Las Vegas on the Floyd Mayweather-Andre Berto undercard. The fight will be Groves’ first since losing to Jack. In August, Di Luisa (18-3, 14 KOs), 33, traveled to Montreal and got knocked out by former titleholder Lucian Bute in the fourth round. He rebounded for a second-round knockout win against Gabor Zsalek, who dropped to 10-35-2, this past Saturday.
• Venezuelan lightweight banger Ismael Barroso (18-0-2, 17 KOs) will be at London’s O2 Arena to face hometown contender Kevin Mitchell (39-3, 29 KOs) for a vacant interim lightweight title on the Anthony Joshua-Dillian Whyte card on Saturday and is gunning for a knockout. “He is a very strong fighter, but he has not fought me,” Barroso said. “I will be strong in every way. I will walk him down and throw many combinations. I will hit him with hard shots, and I will knock him out.” The winner will be mandated to face full titlist Anthony Crolla (30-4-3,12 KOs), of England, within 90 days. In front of his hometown crowd in Manchester, Crolla captured the belt by fifth-round knockout of Darleys Perez on Nov. 21.
• Award-winning boxing photographer Chris Farina, best known for his work as Top Rank’s official photographer for the past 25 years, will be the featured photography artist at the opening of a boxing-themed art exhibit called “Ringside: A Boxing Exhibition” on Nov. 14 at the B2 Fine Art Gallery/Studios in Tacoma, Washington. Farina’s work will be displayed through Jan. 9.