Sydney "Ginger the Ninja" LeBlanc is stepping in on three days' notice to face Women's NABF Middleweight Champion, Claressa "T-Rex" Shields of Flint, Michigan, in the eight-round main event of Salita Promotions' "Detroit Brawl" this Friday, June 16, 2017, at the Masonic Temple in Detroit.
33-year-old LeBlanc (4-1-1) from Gretna, Louisiana, represents a step up in competition from original opponent Mery Rancier, who was unable to participate due to visa issues. A six-year pro who was already in training for a fight on June 10, LeBlanc says she's eager for the chance to upset the two-time Olympian and budding women's superstar Shields.
"I've been pro boxing for nine years, since before the Olympics had a women's division and I've taken a lot of time off because of a lack of available opponents," explained LeBlanc. "These Olympians are reopening the gates for all female fighters. Everybody was on the shelf for years. This is the first time female boxing has been popular since the Ann Wolfe days, so I'm very appreciative of the opportunities they are bringing. I've never watched any of my opponents before a fight, but I know about Claressa Shields and I want to fight her. I'm looking at this fight as a good chance to see where I'm at, skill-wise and I'll be ready."
Shields vs. LeBlanc will be contested for the WBC Silver Super Middleweight Championship.
Once again sponsored by the Greektown Casino Hotel, tickets for "Detroit Brawl" are priced at VIP $200, Box Seats are $100 and $55, Seating is $40, and are available at all Ticketmaster outlets and Ticketmaster.com.
In the 10-round co-main event, undefeated Detroit cruiserweight Demetrius Banks (9-0, 4 KOs) will take on Detroit via Russia's Alexey Zubov (14-1, 9 KOs).
In the night's main supporting bout, undefeated welterweight pulverizer Bakhtiyar Eyubov (12-0, 10 KOs) of Aktjubinsk, Kazakhstan, will look to stay busy waiting for his next high-profile step, as he attempts to inflict his crowd-pleasing style on always-tough Cesar Soriano (27-35-1, 16 KOs) Iztacalco, Mexico, over six rounds.
In another of the chief supporting bouts, Detroit's rising talent and "Great Lakes King" Ja'Rico O'Quinn (6-0, 5 KOs) returns to action in a six-round bantamweight brawl against David Martino (2-2, 2 KOs) of San Felipe, Mexico.
Also scheduled is an all-action six-round super welterweight battle between Antonio Urista (7-2, 2 KOs) of Lansing, Michigan, and highly decorated former amateur star Serdar Hudayberdiyev (3-0, 2 KOs) of Turkmenabat, Turkey.
Opening the night will be a six-round super lightweight tilt between Staten Island, New York via Kazakhstan's Dimash Niyazov (10-0-3, 4 KOs) and Grand Rapids, Michigan, veteran Ramon Guevara (10-24-2, 6 KOs); as well as a four-round welterweight bout between undefeated Jacob Bonas (2-0-1, 1 KO) of Bellville, Michigan, and Clinton Township, Michigan's Tony Brooks (1-1).