Linares vs Gesta

Jorge Linares Mercito Gesta

Linares Gesta

The Forum, California

On air @ 2.30am



THE WBA World Lightweight Title

Three-weight World Champion Jorge Linares defends his WBA World Lightweight Title on January 27th against Mercito Gesta, hoping to make it six successful defences in a row.

Linares (43-3, 27 KOs) won the vacant WBA World Lightweight Title against Mexican veteran Javier Prieto sealing the victory with an impressive knockout in 2014. The Venezuelan followed this up with a stoppage win in a back-and-forth battle with Kevin Mitchell where both men tasted canvas.

Since winning the belt Linares has added several Brits to his resume, defeating Anthony Crolla twice in 2016 and 2017 before dropping and outpointing Olympian Luke Campbell in September.

Mercito Gesta will be hoping to derail the 32-year-old’s run of form and become the first man to defeat Linares in five and a half years. Gesta has an impressive record of 31-1 with 17 KOs. His last loss came in 2012 to then-World Champion Miguel Vazquez.

Since that reverse, Gesta is on a six fight unbeaten streak that includes a brutal knockout win over former World Title challenger Martin Honorio. Linares must be weary of the Filipino’s power, and a win will take him one step close to a potential unification with Robert Easter Jr.

Lucas Matthysse Tewa Kiram

Matthysse Kiram

On air @ 2.30am

The WBA World Welterweight Title

Also on the card in California is Argentinian bruiser Lucas Matthysse, who will be aiming to win his first World Title against undefeated Tewa Kiram.

Matthysse (38-4, 35 KOs) has faced a murderer’s row of opponents at Super-Lightweight, but despite beating many former World Champions he has fallen just short of winning world honours.

‘The Machine’ has notable wins on his resume such as Ruslan Provodnikov, John Molina Jr, Lamont Peterson, Humberto Soto and Vivian Harris. He’s known for his fearsome punching power and entertaining style.

Last time out, the Argentine overcame durable American Emmanuel Taylor, becoming the first man to stop him, putting him down twice before finishing him off in the fifth.

His opponent Kiram (39-0, 28 KOs) will be full of confidence having never tasted defeat. However, this will be the toughest test of the young Thai’s career and a massive step-up in class.

Both men are carry power and will be looking to stamp their authority and win the first full World Title.