By Francisco Salazar
Unbeaten Julian Williams has been waiting to fight the big names in his weight class. He is likely one step away from that happening.
Williams will fight Marcello Matano on March 5 in a 12 round bout at the Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, Penn, according to sources who told BoxingScene.com on Thursday afternoon. Williams-Matano will be an elimination bout to face IBF junior middleweight titleholder Jermall Charlo, who appears to be heading to an April defense against Vanes Martirosyan.
The bout will headline a “Showtime Championship Boxing” special edition broadcast.
Williams (21-0-1, 13 KOs) has ascended from prospect to contender status over the last couple of years. He is currently ranked in the top 10 by three of the major governing bodies.
A hard-hitting boxer from Philadelphia, Williams made short of work of the normally-durable Luciano Cuello in his last fight on September 22, stopping him in the first round.
Williams, who is ranked number five by the IBF, also has victories over Joey Hernandez and Eliezer Gonzalez.
Matano (16-1, 5 KOs), who is ranked number seven by the IBF, has won his last four bouts in a row. The fighter from Occhiobello, Italy defeated Nick Klappert by decision in his last bout on October 31.
Rounding out the broadcast, unbeaten middleweight Antoine Douglas (19-0-1, 13 KOs) will fight Sam Soliman (44-13 1 NC, 18 KOs) in a 10 round bout.
Tony Harrison (22-1, 18 KOs) squares off Fernando Guerrero (28-3, 20 KOs) in a 10 round bout. The bout could be fought at a catch-weight between 154 and 160 pounds.
Lou DiBella will be the promoter of record.
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 (CA) Star newspaper, RingTV, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing