WBA and IBF 154-pound champion Jeison Rosario stated his intention to go toe-to-toe with WBC champion Jermell Charlo when they clash this Saturday on Showtime PPV. “Fight fans are going to get a war on September 26,” said Rosario. “Charlo and I are two of the biggest punchers in the division. We both fight with a lot of pride. We’re two very aggressive fighters who want to fight in the middle of the ring, so we’re going to bring the action and make this an epic war.”
The 25-year-old Rosario has had a smooth training camp for the biggest fight of his career, despite the pandemic, while training in Miami, Fla. with his coach Luis “Chiro” Perez.
“Even on a normal basis, we stay in a training camp house by ourselves, so this was just more of the same,” said Rosario. “There’s no family and no outsiders. It’s nothing but training. We know we’re facing a strong, explosive opponent, so we’ve done everything during this 16-week camp to prepare for him. We brought in great sparring partners with similar style to Charlo’s, so I’m as ready for him as I possibly can be.”
Rosario returns to the ring after a career-altering victory over Julian Williams in January, in which he stopped Williams to capture his WBA and IBF titles. Despite the sensational victory, Rosario knows that Charlo will present different challenges than he faced going up against Williams.
“I think Williams was probably more skilled technically, and he was harder to hit because he changes up his angles a lot,” said Rosario. “Charlo is stronger, a bigger puncher, and I think he’s a more athletic fighter than Williams. We’re preparing for the best Charlo and we know that means we have to be at our very best too.”
Prior to the Williams fight, Rosario began working Perez for the first time, and he credits that work, the first “real training camp” of his career, to his career-best performance against Williams.
“Training with Coach Perez has led to a lot of improvements and allowed me to reach my full potential,” said Rosario. “My camps for the Williams fight and the Charlo fight are the first real training camps of my career. After I fought Jorge Cota, I knew that I needed to make changes and be more dedicated.
“There are no distractions or excuses for me now. A better diet, better conditioning and more focused training has all played a part in the changes. For this fight, I’m going to be even stronger than I was against Williams. My body wasn’t really used to the training camp going into that fight. My body is responding even better after my second 16-week training camp.”
Hailing from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, a hotbed of baseball talent that has produced household names such as David Ortiz, Albert Pujols and Manny Ramirez, Rosario has quickly made himself the fighting pride of the island. His experience growing up living on the street as a child has motivated him to reach this point, even if he didn’t always see himself reaching this peak in the sport.
“I fight with a lot of pride and emotion,” said Rosario. “I just try to be myself, but I also want to represent the Dominican Republic the best way I can. I fight for my kids and my country and I leave it all in the ring. One of my biggest motivations for me was my economic status as a child. Living in the street as a kid, we were very poor. I didn’t want my kids to go through that, so that fed my hunger to provide for my family and take care of them the best I can.
“I always knew that I could be good, but I never imagined being in this position. God’s timing is perfect. Everything came when it was supposed to. I’ve been very lucky and got the opportunities at the right time. I started training with Coach Perez at the right time. I got the Williams fight at the right time and took full advantage of the opportunity. Now, we’re here with a chance to unify the division, and I believe September 26 will be my time.”