Sebastian Fundora is confident of being ready for the title stage.
The unbeaten junior middleweight contender takes a significant next step on that journey as he faces Mexican knockout artist Jorge Cota (30-4, 27KOs). The scheduled 12-round bout lands as part of a four-fight Fox Sports Pay-Per-View event this Saturday from Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California. A win by the 6’6” southpaw will keep him on path for a major title in a division which is on the verge of crowning its first-ever four-belt champion later this summer.
While awaiting his shot, Fundora looks to add to his growing resume.
“I felt the competition level changed with fighting Nathaniel Gallimore,” Fundora notes of his Fox-televised win over the veteran fringe contender last August in Los Angeles. “Winning that fight and my most recent one has really helped boost my confidence up so I feel like I can take on anyone in this division.”
Fundora (16-0-1, 11KOs) was due to have faced Cota on the previous Fox Sports PPV event which took place last December at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The show went on and with Fundora along for the ride, though without Cota who tested positive for COVID-19.
Cota was replaced by Habib Ahmed, who Fundora stopped inside of two rounds in support of unified WBC/IBF welterweight titlist Errol Spence’s triumphant ring return in a 12-round decision win over Danny Garcia. Spence (27-0, 21KOs) is a training stablemate of Jermell Charlo (34-1, 18KOs), the reigning lineal/WBC/WBA/IBF junior middleweight champion who is set to face WBO titlist Brian Castaño (17-0-1, 12KOs) this coming July.
Fundora is very much interested in facing the winner, even if he will likely have to wait his turn. There stands a greater likelihood of at least one mandatory challenger first getting his shot or the undisputed championship becoming fractured immediately thereafter. Whatever the case, Fundora insists he is ready for all of it.
“We’re looking to get that shot at the champions in this division,” vows Fundora, though obviously focused on the task at hand this weekend. “No matter who is in front of us, we’re aiming to impress and show everyone we deserve to be on that level.
“We don’t really worry too much about what the competition in my immediate future is going to look like, we just keep working hard one fight at a time.
Fundora-Cota serves as a supporting bout to a heavyweight clash between former unified titlist Andy Ruiz (33-2, 22KOs) and three-time title challenger Chris Arreola (38-6-1, 33KOs; 2 ND).
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox