By Miguel Maravilla
WBC super featherweight champion Miguel “Alacran” Berchelt (38-1-0, 34 KOs) of Cancun squares off against former world champion Oscar Valdez (28-0-0, 22 KOs) of Nogales, Sonora in a Mexican showdown this Saturday in the bubble of the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas live on ESPN. The champ spoke about his upcoming title defense against his fellow countryman Valdez in what has the makings of a classic.
“I’m excited for this fight and extremely focused, motivated in having a great fight. I have worked hard to be where I am today. This fight represents a lot is the biggest fight in Mexican boxing. This will be a great fight. I’m ready. I feel I am going to win this fight. It will be a war,” Berchelt said. “I will give it my best. I will fight a smart fight, and everyone knows that I can punch. El Alacran will unleash his poison.”
This will be Berchelt’s seventh defense of his WBC 130-pound world championship he won in over Francisco Vargas by stoppage in January of 2017. Since then, Berchelt has defended his title five times with wins over Japan’s Takashi Miura, Mickey Roman, and stopped Francisco Vargas a second time in their rematch. Berchelt’s last title defense came in November of 2019 as he scored a fourth-round knockout over Jason Sosa.
“This is definitely the biggest fight of my career against Valdez. I’m really excited,” Berchelt said. “Come Saturday night, the fans will be the real winners,”
Coming off a stoppage over Eleazar Valenzuela, Berchelt had a glorified sparring session in scoring the sixth-round knockout in a non-title bout back in June at the TV Azteca Studios in Mexico City.
There is no doubt that this is the biggest fight of Berchelt’s career as he held a solid training camp.
“I have had a great camp. My preparation was great I am ready for this fight Saturday night. I’m coming with everything,” Berchelt on his preparation.
Unfortunately for Berchelt, he could be without his head trainer _ as he had VISA issues entering the country. Berchelt however remains optimistic that he will have his trainer in his corner come fight night.
“Being without my trainer Alfredo Caballero, what can I say? I’m like a luxury yacht and to navigate the ocean the yacht needs a captain that is going to guide it,” Berchelt on the situation
With the magnitude of this fight, Berchelt cannot afford to have this serve as a distraction.
“I feel great. Regardless of the situation. Alfredo will be here. I am just ready for this fight and anxious to get in the ring. Alfredo is anxious to go up against Eddie Reynoso,”
As for his opponent, Valdez a 2012 Olympian, won his first world title with a stunning knockout over Matias Rueda in the summer of 2016. Valdez made seven defenses of his WBO featherweight title including a thrilling decision win over Scott Quigg as he fought most of the fight with a broken jaw. Valdez vacated his title and moved up to super featherweight in November of 2019 as he rose from the canvas to stop Adam Lopez.
“He is a great fighter. He lays it all on the line. Styles make fights. He has his style and I have my style,” Berchelt on Oscar Valdez.
Valdez stopped former world title contender Jayson Velez of Puerto Rico in ten rounds in his last fight in July at the Bubble at MGM Grand.
“This is one of the most anticipated fights of the year. Some will be rooting for me some will be rooting against me. The main thing is to give a great fight,”
History has proven that each time two great Mexican fighter’s step into the ring they lay it all on the line. From the days of Zamora Zarate to Barrera Morales, Marquez Vasquez. Berchelt talked about his days growing up as a fan and watching the great fights.
“Since I was 16, I have dreamed of a fight like this. I remember watching Barrera Morales, Barrera Marquez, Vasquez Marquez big fights in which Mexican fighters have laid it all in the ring,” Berchelt on the Mexican classics. “There have been many great fights between Mexican fighters in the past they have been wars, classics. The Barrera Morales trilogy is the best. Now the bar has been set high for us this Saturday,”
Mexican boxing has had some of the best rivalries and classic bouts. Come fight night all of Mexico will be tuned as this is the biggest fight in Mexico. Saturday night we anticipate it to be another classic night for Mexican boxing and boxing in general. A fight the sport needs.
“I know all of Mexico will be watching. Everyone knows what happens when two great Mexican’s are matched up. Boxing is deceiving. You never know what is going to happen. It can end early, late, or go the distance,” Berchelt said. “Saturday will get it on and beat the shit out of each other. Expect a great fight it doesn’t matter what happens this is a fight everyone wants to see, and we will definitely come out and fight.”
Follow Miguel on Twitter @MigMaravilla