Miguel Roman hopes the third time is the charm against Miguel Berchelt
On Saturday, November 3, live from the Don Haskins Convention Center in El Paso, Texas, WBC junior lightweight world champion Miguel “El Alacrán” Berchelt, 34-1 (30), will defend his title against Miguel “Mickey” Roman, 60-12 (47), live on ESPN.
Berchelt, from Cancun, Mexico, is looking to successfully make the fourth defense of his world title while Juarez, Mexico’s Roman hopes this time is the charm, as he steps into the batter’s box for his third crack at a world title strap.
Roman, who turned pro as a 17-year old back in the spring of 2003, is no stranger to stepping onto the big stage for a title fight. “Mickey” lost a unanimous decision to Jonathon Victor Barros for the WBA featherweight title in 2011 and was stopped by Antonio DeMarco in a bid for the WBC lightweight title in 2012.
Now, at age 32, and with 72 bouts in the bank, he knows world title shots won’t keep coming along, so he has to make the most of this opportunity. Roman earned the title shot off a win over former world champion Orlando Salido last December. However he’ll be facing a very determined Berchelt, who is enjoying life as a champion.
Berchelt won the WBO interim world junior lightweight title in March of 2016 and defended it four months later.
Then in January of 2017, he stopped previously undefeated Francisco Vargas to win the WBC junior lightweight title. Now he faces Roman and is looking to make his fourth title defense in 16 months. And despite Roman’s determination and home court advantage Berchelt has no plans on letting go of his title.
In pre-fight interviews, it was clear that both fighters, who have traded some heated verbal jabs at one another in the press, are both anxious to face each other in the ring.
“I am very happy to be here. It’s my second time on ESPN. I have been training very hard in Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico,” said Berchelt. “When there are two Mexicans in the ring, the show is guaranteed to be great. This won’t be the exception.”
And while Berchelt is heading into Roman country, he feels he’ll leave Texas with both the belt and some new members in the Berchelt fan club.
“In boxing, trash talk is normal. At the end of the day, we are fighters. It is going to be a great fight. The people will leave the arena happy because they are going to see a great fight. They are going to see a great champion in Miguel Berchelt,” he continued. “Roman and I have wanted this fight for a very, very long time. He asked for this opportunity and I am happy to give it to him. This is going to be a great fight but I know it will end with my hands raised. I am young and hungry. It doesn’t matter that we’re fighting in his backyard. El Paso and Juarez are going to be my towns when it’s over.”
However battle-tested veteran Roman feels this is his time and he doesn’t plan on letting anyone come into his backyard and deny him of something he has been working hard for over the last 15 years.
“I feel great fighting for this belt against Miguel Berchelt. This is something that we’ve been waiting for. Now, it’s happening,” said Roman. “I live near the border and fighting here is like I’m fighting in my house. The people from El Paso, Juarez and Las Cruces (New Mexico) always support me. On November 3, my people are going to come and support me.
“I’m fighting a great champion in Miguel Berchelt. He’s very strong and I respect him a lot. I gotta do what I gotta do. I gotta do my job. My experience, strength and hunger to win this title will take me to victory. He’s talking all of this stuff, that he’s going to take my head off and things like that. El Paso is my town. If he thinks he’s going to come in here and be talking like that, he’s got another thing coming.”
Weekend title talk
* Daniel “The Miracle Man” Jacobs, 35-2 (29), won the vacant IBF middleweight title via split decision over previously unbeaten Sergiy “The Technician” Derevyanchenko, 12-1 (10), on Saturday night in New York City.
* Also on the undercard at the Hulu Theater in Madison Square Garden, on Saturday night, WBA “regular” junior lightweight champion Alberto “El Explosivo” Machado, 21-0 (17), drilled Yuandale “Money Shot” Evans, 20-2 (14), via first round KO. Evans was up and down like a fiddler’s elbow, hitting the deck three times before the one-sided bout was stopped at 2:25 of the opening frame.
* On the same NYC card, Heather “The Heat” Hardy, 22-0 (4), posted a 10-round unanimous decision over Shelly “Shelito’s Way” Vincent, 23-2 (1), to win the WBO female featherweight title.
* WBC interim junior welterweight champion Regis “Rougarou” Prograis, 23-0 (19), scored a unanimous decision over former WBO lightweight champion Terry Flanagan, 33-2 (13) on Saturday night, in New Orleans, Louisiana.
* Also on the undercard in New Orleans, Ivan Baranchyk, 19-0 (12), won the vacant IBF junior welterweight title versus a very gutsy Anthony Yigit, 21-1-1 (7), by referee stoppage via ringside doctor’s advice at the end of the seventh round.