By Ronnie Nathanielsz
WBC minimumweight mandatory challenger Denver Cuello (33-4-6, 21 KO’s), a hard-hitting Filipino southpaw, will at last battle champion Xiong Zhao Zhong (20-4-1, 11 KO’s) of China for the title in Dubai on June 28.
WBC official Patrick Cusik has informed president Don Jose Sulaiman that “both boxers, champion Zhong and challenger Cuello have signed fighters contracts with the promoter in Dubai, KO Promotions.”
KO Promotions is headed by Dameza Taumafal who previously promoted a fight card featuring ALA Promotions boxers headed by Rey “Boom Boom” Bautista and Milan Melindo at The Lodge, Chi Garden in Dubai on April 23, 2010 where the local television coverage for ALA Promotions and partners ABS-CBN proved to be a disaster although all other arrangements including hotel accommodation, transportation and food were excellent.
Bautista who was very popular with Filipinos in the U.A.E scored a 6th round knockout over Thailand’s Saichon Sotompitak while Melindo won by a 4th round TKO over Komrit Lukkuomgmuekol.
Cusik reported that “both fighters were happy to sign the fighter contract” and added that a press conference will be held in Kunming (China) on June 6.
It was the city where Zhong won the vacant world title with a twelve round unanimous decision over Javier Martinez Resendiz of Mexico after Cuello’s manager agreed to step-aside to give the WBC an opportunity to btreak into the potentially vast Chinese market.
There was an attempt to give Zhong a voluntary title defense when the WBC board of governors disregarded the commitment made to Cuello as the mandatory challenger but that fight fizzled out and after a long wait Cuello will get his eagerly awaited title shot.
Cusik said he has been invited by the promoter to Dubai to speak to the event management group on 26 May and go through all the WBC requirements.