By Jake Donovan
Less than a week after plans were announced for super featherweight contender Argenis Mendez to return to his native Dominican Republic for his next fight, there is already a new opponent awaiting him.
Mendez (18-2, 9KO) will face Jose Palma of Colombia on November 18 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, event handlers announced Monday afternoon. Palma (14-4-2, 9KO) replaces countryman Samir Torres, though no explanation was offered as to which the change in opponents.
The bout serves as the co-feature attraction of a show that will air live on ESPN Deportes.
Mendez returns home for the first time in three years, joining stable mate Joan Guzman, who appears in the evening’s main event against Florencio Castellano.
The fight comes on the heels of Mendez’ controversial points loss to Juan Carlos Salgado this past September in his opponent’s native Mexico. Mendez was slow coming out of the gate but picked up steam in the second half and scored a final round knockdown, only to come up short on the scorecards in their vacant title fight.
His upcoming hometown showcase figures to be far less taxing. Palma is 0-2 outside of his native Colombia and lacks wins over anyone of relevance. A step up in class against red-hot prospect Dante Jardon last September ended early in the second round when he was disqualified for a headbutt that left a deep gash along his opponent’s forehead.
The loss to Jardon came in the midst of a three fight losing streak for Palma, who has since won three straight.
Two more opponent changes on the undercard were also announced, both involving the scheduled female fights on the show.
Unbeaten Amanda Serrano of Puerto Rico (12-0, 11KO) will now face Diana Ayala (10-5-3, 6KO) in the first defense of her newly acquired super featherweight belt.
Four divisions north, late blooming Mikaela Lauren of Sweden leaves Europe for the first time in her career, as the 35-year old squares off against 36-year old Gabriela Zapata (9-5, 3KO)
Tickets can be purchased online at www.uepa.com or by calling the UEPA box office at (809) 620-8372.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter at twitter.com/JakeNDaBox or submit questions/comments to [email protected].