By Francisco Salazar
Francisco Rodriguez, Jr. has reignited his career in a new weight class. He hopes it will lead to a world title shot in 2019.
Hernan ‘Tyson’ Marquez was one of the more feared punchers in the lower weight classes just five years ago but has struggled in recent fights.
Rodriguez and Marquez will square off in a crossroads clash tonight at the Centro de Convenciones in Cozumel, Quintana Roo, Mexico. The 10-round bout will air live on Televisa throughout Mexico.
Rodriguez (28-4-1, 20 knockouts), who resides in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, knocked out overmatched Yohei Tobe of Japan in round two on June 9.
The 25-year-old Rodriguez won a world title belt at 105 pounds but lost back-to-back fights in 2015 against then-WBO junior flyweight titleholder Donnie Nietes and Mexico’s Moises Fuentes.
Rodriguez has won his last nine bouts, seven of them by knockouts.
Marquez (43-9-2, 30 KOs) has struggled in recent fights. The 30-year-old from Empalme, Sonora, Mexico was stopped by Jose Quirino after the ninth round of his last bout on Apr. 21.
Marquez held a flyweight world title, but he has been stopped recently by the likes of Brian Viloria (2012), McJoe Arroyo (2014), and Juan Francisco Estrada (2015). He lost by unanimous decision in December of 2016 to Iran Diaz, who challenged WBC junior bantamweight titleholder Srisaket Sor Rungvisai on Oct. 6.
In the co-feature, fringe junior featherweight contender Francisco Horta (18-3-1, 10 KOs) from nearby Cancun will square off against Juan Jimenez (26-14-2, 18 KOs) in an eight-round bout.
Junior welterweight prospect and 2016 Mexican Olympian Lindolfo Delgado (6-0, 6 KOs) will face Luis Humberto Moreno in a six-round bout.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for Boxingscene.com since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing