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November 5, 2013
Star Sport


 

Walters, Garza in Texas for title fight
Leroy Brown, Star Writer


Nicholas 'The Axeman' Walters hits Colombia's Daulis Prescott (right) with a solid left during their World Boxing Association (WBA) featherweight title fight at the National Indoor Sports Complex last December. Walters scored a seventh round TKO win. - File

Jamaica's Nicholas 'The Axeman' Walters, the World Boxing Association featherweight champion, and his challenger, Mexico's Alberto Garza, had an unplanned first meeting on Sunday night when they arrived simultaneously at the Corpus Christi airport. Their anxiously awaited title fight will take place over 12 rounds on Saturday at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi.

Walters flew in from Panama, his main training base, while Garza came in from Mexico, and their aircrafts landed shortly after each other. STAR Sports was told by the Walters camp that there was no animosity between the fighters and they cleared immigration and customs without incident. They shook hands, took photographs together for the press, but did not exchange any words.

Walters was accompanied by his chief trainer Celso Chavez and his father, Job, who is the assistant trainer for the fight. Job joined the team over the weekend. Walters completed his pre-fight medical and preliminary weigh-in yesterday, and all tests were said to be fine.

His manager Jacques Deschamps told STAR Sports that the champion has basically completed his training for the fight.

"He will run each day, do work with the pads with Job, skip and do a few rounds of shadow boxing and light sparring. His weight is alright and we just have to keep him sharp," said Deschamps.

hard-hitting opponent

Walters, who has a 22-0 record with 18 victories inside the distance, will be going up against a hard-hitting opponent who is very aggressive and likes to keep the action at close range. He has a record of 25 victories, five losses and a draw, with 20 knockout victims. Walters has been champion since December 8, last year when he scored a seventh round technical knockout victory over Colombia's Daulis Prescott for the then vacant title.

This will be his first title defence as all efforts to get an opponent since December fell through, until he signed a two-year contract with Bob Arum's promotional company Top Rank several weeks ago. A victory on Saturday will undoubtedly open a lot of doors for him.

The line-up for the card is impressive and Walters and Garza will be playing second fiddle to two other world title fights, and a long-anticipated return fight between two former champions, Nonito Donaire and Vic Darchinyan. The other title fights will see Vanes Martirosyan going against Demetrius Andrade for the vacant World Boxing Organisation (WBO) lightweight title and Mikey Garcia taking on Roman Martinez in what is expected to be a thrill-packed encounter for the WBO super featherweight title.

The weigh-in and final official medical examinations for all the boxers on the card will take place at 1 p.m. on Friday, at the Whataburger field.

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