Many observers are anticipating one of the fights of the year when WBC king Jermell Charlo and WBA Super/IBF title-holder Jeison Rosario seek to unify their 154lbs belts at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Connecticut on September 26.
Both men are in confident mood ahead of the Showtime Pay-Per-View broadcast in the US, promoted by Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions. For Houston’s Charlo, the fight is the next step in his boxing destiny as he attempts the jump to superstar status.
“I’m stronger and faster than I’ve ever been. Camp has been amazing. I can’t believe I got in shape so fast, but I really never got out of shape. I make investments in myself and I do my homework,” said Charlo (33-1, 17 KOs). “Congratulations to Rosario for getting the chance to move up to this level. But I know what I possess in the ring when I choose to let it out of me. I’m more ready for this fight than any fight I’ve ever had.
“My legacy is on the line. I feed my family this way. It’s no secret about how I fight. I’m dangerous and I feel even more dangerous now. I’m excited to go 12 rounds. My capacity and skills are exceeding all of these guys in the division. I’m way hungrier now. The fire has been lit in me.
“There’s so many things I do that make me believe I’m the best in the division. I can go on and on, but I’m a lion in the cage, let me out and see what happens.”
Rosario (20-1-1, 14 KOs) has other ideas. The hulking Dominican stunned Julian Williams, widely regarded as the 154lbs division’s top fighter, in five rounds in January and is primed to take down another champion.
“I am even hungrier now than I was before I won the titles. I’m more motivated. The desire inside of me and the fire inside of me is burning to win this fight against a great fighter in Jermell Charlo,” said Rosario. “Like the Dominican people say, ‘We have to keep moving forward’ and that’s what I plan to do in this fight.
“Jermell Charlo and Julian Williams are definitely two different types of fighters. I think Williams has a little more quickness, but Jermell is definitely stronger and has more power. That’s why I’ve had to prepare a little differently for this fight. Williams was a great fighter and he was considered No. 1 when I fought him, which is now the same position that Jermell Charlo is in.
“I consider this to be my time. Empires fall. Presidents fall. Kingdoms fall. It’s all very interesting because under Charlo’s brand, you have the lion and you have the hunter and all that. But during the fight, you’re going to find out who really is the hunter. I’m a warrior and we’re going to see that night who really is the hunter and who is the one that’s going to be hunted.”
Main image: Jermell Charlo gains revenge against Tony Harrison in their rematch. Photo: Stephanie Trapp/TGB Promotions.