Arthur Villanueva is full of hope heading for his world title shot at WBC bantamweight king Nordine Oubaali on #MTKFightNight in Kazakhstan on Saturday.
Filipino star Villanueva (32-3-1, 18 KOs) heads for the Barys Arena in Nur-Sultan to challenge French hero Oubaali (15-0, 11 KOs) live on ESPN+ in association with Top Rank and also broadcast on QAZ Sports and iFL TV.
Having challenged the likes of Zolani Tete and McJoe Arroyo for world honours in the past, Villanueva is desperate to record a life-changing victory over Oubaali.
Villanueva said: “I’m very excited for this fight and very grateful to all those who made it possible. It’s a big break for me.
“It’s always a great honour for me to fight abroad and represent my country – especially now I’m fighting with the opportunity of becoming world champion and making a name for myself.
“It’s a great honour but also a great responsibility. I grew up in a poor family and victory here is the only answer for changing my life with a good boxing career and the fulfilment of my dreams.
“I’m very excited to be boxing on this platform. I know Oubaali is an Olympian and I saw he’s a good boxer against Rau’shee Warren but this is my big chance to show my talent.”
On a stellar and historic bill, ‘Da Kazakh Kid’ Zhankosh Turarov (23-0, 16 KOs) clashes with Mauro Godoy (31-4-1, 16 KOs) for the WBO Inter-Continental super-lightweight crown while another Kazakh Viktor Kotochigov (9-0, 4 KOs) bids for the WBC International lightweight title against Jairo Lopez (24-10, 16 KOs).
Ireland’s WBO European featherweight champion Davey Oliver Joyce (10-0, 8 KOs) is in action against Breilor Teran (27-17-1, 20 KOs) with a host of Kazakhstan’s top talents on the undercard; including Sultan Zaurbek, Ali Baloyev, Abilkhaiyr Shegaliyev, Nurtas Azhbenov and Abay Tolesh.