By Miguel Rivera
WBO junior middleweight champion Jaime Munguia (29-0, 25 KOs) is looking forward to a mandatory showdown with former champion Liam Smith (26-1-1, 14 KOs) of the UK.
Munguia captured the title earlier this month, with a four round thrashing of Sadam Ali in Verona, New York. The young Mexican puncher sent Ali down four times before the contest was waved off.
Smith previously held the WBO title - until he lost the belt to Canelo Alvarez in September 2016. Since then, he's won three fights including a final eliminator against Liam Williams.
According to Munguia, the fight is being targeted for two dates in the month of July.
"We are going to fight on July 21 or 28. I already started running this week, I have a good rhythm to fight and I do not want to waste it. I think that next week we will return to the gym in a stronger way, this week has been crazy," Munguia told ESPN Deportes.
"Regarding Liam Smith, I feel he is a fighter who does not have a big name, but he is a very experienced fighter who fought with the best of the division, including Canelo Alvarez. But I think I have what it takes to beat him. I always put in a good preparation physical and mentally. I'm sure that it will be a great fight."
Munguia is hoping to emulate the success of his two Mexican idols, Julio Cesar Chavez and Juan Manuel Marquez.
"Julio Cesar Chavez, I love his way of fighting, his aggressiveness, he did not stop throwing punches for the entire three minutes of each round, and for the entire twelve rounds of the fight. Marquez is also a good counter-puncher, and there are many more. But I want to continue my journey in my own way, so that someday the children are saying that they want to be like me," Munguia said.