Healthy once again, Josesito Lopez is ready to pick up the pace in his pursuit of another world title opportunity.
“The Riverside Rocky” returned to action in December for his first fight in nearly 21 months after overcoming a hand injury, and he had little trouble shaking off the ring rust as he earned a wide six-round unanimous decision over Todd Manuel in Los Angeles.
That bout was essentially an appetizer for Lopez, though, just something to tide over his desire to get back in the squared circle. Now, however, he’s ready for the main course.
Josesito Lopez (34-7, 19 KOs) will take on Mexico’s Saul Corral (22-8, 13 KOs) on April 9 in a 10-round bout that headlines a Premier Boxing Champions Toe-to-Toe Tuesdays card at The Novo in Los Angeles.
In the co-main event of the FS1-televised card (9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT), 135-pound contender Alejandro Luna (21-0, 15 KOs) will take on former title challenger Andrey Klimov (19-3, 9 KOs) in a 10-round bout. In addition, 2016 U.S. Olympian Carlos Balderas will make his professional debut in a 130-pound bout set for six rounds.
Lopez, 32, made his pro debut 14 years ago and earned his first world title shot in 2012 when he broke Victor Ortiz’s jaw in the ninth round and scored a huge upset victory.
The Riverside, California, native then was stopped by Canelo Alvarez in the fifth round of a 154-pound title fight in September 2012, and in Round 6 by Marcos Maidana in a 147-pound bout in June 2013, but along the way also enhanced his reputation as an exciting fighter who doesn’t shy away from a dogfight.
“I'm excited to get back in the ring as the main event and put on a show for the fans in Los Angeles,” Lopez said. “I'm looking for a world title shot and I believe I have the skills to beat any welterweight out there.
“This is going to be a great night of fights from start to finish. I've been training like never before and I can't wait to show everybody.”
Corral, 30, made his pro debut in November 2006 and has won 10 of his last 12 bouts. The resident of Agua Prieta, Sonora, Mexico, last fought on the Canelo Alvarez-Liam Smith undercard in Arlington, Texas, in September, when he dropped a 10-round unanimous decision to Sadam Ali.
Now preparing to fight in the U.S. again for just the third time in his career, Corral sees his chance to make a career breakthrough.
“I can't wait to get in the ring and make the most of this opportunity to make a name for myself,” Corral said. “I've been training hard to be ready for anything Josesito brings. It's going to be an exciting fight, but I'm prepared to leave everything in the ring and get the victory.”
For a complete look at Lopez vs Corral, visit our fight page.