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Roman: I Want A Rematch With Akhmadaliev; I Want Those Titles Back

Daniel Roman is determined to win back his titles.

To remain in position to earn an opportunity to regain those championships from Murodjon Akhmadaliev, the former IBF/WBA 122-pound champ must get past Juan Carlos Payano. Los Angeles’ Roman and Miami’s Payano are set to meet Saturday night on the Jermell Charlo-Jeison Rosario undercard at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.

“That’s the goal of the team, you know, but I’m not overlooking Payano,” Roman said during a virtual press conference. “Payano is a great fighter, a quality fighter, like I said, and I’m not overlooking him. First, we’ve gotta get past him. And then, hopefully, we can get the rematch with [Akhmadaliev] and get those titles back.”

roman-akhmadaliev (4)

Uzbekistan’s Akhmadaliev (8-0, 6 KOs) beat Roman (27-3-1, 10 KOs) by split decision in a 12-rounder January 30 in Miami to win those junior featherweight titles. Akhmadaliev defeated Roman on two scorecards, but their fight was very competitive (115-113, 115-113, 113-115).

The 30-year-old Roman had won 19 straight bouts before Akhmadaliev beat him.

The Roman-Payano winner will earn a shot at the WBC super bantamweight title because their 12-rounder is a WBC eliminator. The winner of another upcoming WBC elimination match, Carlos Castro-Christopher Diaz on October 24 in Las Vegas, will be recognized as the WBC’s first mandatory challenger for its 122-pound championship.

Unbeaten Mexicans Luis Nery (30-0, 24 KOs) and Aaron Alameda (25-0, 13 KOs) will square off for the vacant WBC 122-pound crown on the same Showtime Pay-Per-View undercard on which Roman and Payano will fight September 26. Mexico’s Rey Vargas (34-0, 22 KOs) has been named the WBC’s super bantamweight champion in recess because he is recovering from a broken leg and will be sidelined for an extended period of time.

The Dominican Republic’s Payano (21-3, 9 KOs) has lost by knockout in two of his past three bouts. Those losses came against elite opponents – Nery and Japanese star Naoya Inoue (19-0, 16 KOs), the IBF/WBA bantamweight champ – but Roman is favored to beat the 36-year-old former WBA bantamweight champ.

“He lost with big names, with quality fighters,” Roman said. “So, I mean, a fight’s a fight, you know? Anything can happen in a fight, so I’m getting ready for that. I’m getting ready to fight the best of Payano.

“I’m not taking him lightly. You know? I’m taking him serious, like if I was defending the belt, [like] I was fighting a world champion.”

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.

User Comments and Feedback
Comment by Kannabis Kid on 09-24-2020

His fight with MJ was extremely close and as the champ he should've kept the belts I'm almost positive he was still dealing with his shoulder injury going into that fight but it is what it is hopefully that rematch…

Comment by GBP4LIFE on 09-24-2020

It was Roman mandatory... However, if Roman wanted the rematch why would he go to the PBC!?? Clearly DAZN did not want to continue to pay Roman.

Comment by James Hunt on 09-24-2020

[QUOTE=Phill lynott;20775835]Roman didn't need to take that fight but gave the Uzbek a shot. Let's see what kind of character they have in Uzbekistan. Return the favor and give Roman a rematch or grab a gift and run?[/QUOTE] It wasn't…

Comment by Phill lynott on 09-24-2020

Roman didn't need to take that fight but gave the Uzbek a shot. Let's see what kind of character they have in Uzbekistan. Return the favor and give Roman a rematch or grab a gift and run?

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