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‘Showdown at Sands’ Promises Exciting Matchups, Titles Up for Grabs

Showdown at Sands promises to deliver eight exciting matchups including a seven-bout undercard featuring two title fights and headlined by a battle between Zou Shiming and Amnat Ruenroeng for the IBF world flyweight crown. It all goes down this Saturday, March 7 at The Venetian Macao’s Cotai Arena with the first fight scheduled for 5:45pm.
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Sponsored ContentThe main event will see two undefeated fighters go head to head, with China’s double Olympic gold medallist and national hero Zou (6-0, 1 KO) looking to take the IBF world flyweight title from reigning champion Ruenroeng (14-0, 5 KOs). They met in the ring three times as amateurs, with Zou earning victories in their last two encounters. But as a pro, Zou will lace his gloves in what is only his seventh career fight – and his first-ever attempt at a world title. It could prove to be a tall order, as Ruenroeng counts more than twice the number of professional fights under his belt. The 35-year-old champion from Thailand has already successfully defended his title twice since earning it a little over one year ago. The Cotai Arena crowd will likely give Zou a lift with a home-country advantage, but will it be enough to dethrone the Thai?

Zou isn’t the only fighter flying the flag for China at the Showdown at Sands. Undefeated Ik Yang (18-0-0-1, 13 KOs) from Dalian will take on another Thai fighter in Patomsuk Pathompothong (30-2-1, 18 KOs). With 13 knockouts from 18 fights, Yang will look to add to that tally against 31-year-old Pathompothong when they meet in their 12-round IBF light welterweight title eliminator. Yang is no stranger to Macao, having fought in the city on four previous occasions. Pathompothong will be making his Macao debut and like his compatriot Ruenroeng will likely have to deal with the crowd, who will almost certainly be rooting for the Chinese fighter.

One of two undercard title fights brings New Jersey native Glen “Jersey Boy” Tapia (22-1, 14 KOs) to face off against 37-year-old Australian Daniel “Awesome” Dawson (40-4-1, 26 KOs) in a 10-round contest for the NABO junior middleweight championship. Tapia is 12 years Dawson’s junior at just 25 and has only one loss on his nearly flawless record. Dawson on the other hand is 6-1-1 in his last eight fights and has spent time as a sparring partner for the legendary Manny Pacquiao.

The other undercard title fight will see Hong Kong’s undefeated Rex “The Wonder Kid” Tso (15-0, 9 KOs) take on Filipino fighter Michael Enriquez (10-2-1, 6 KOs) over 10 rounds for the WBA international super flyweight title. The 27-year-old Tso has nine knockouts in 15 fights, some of which have come against opponents with considerably more experience. Tso will likely be confident going into the fight as he is currently ranked No. 3 by the WBO. Enriquez will also go into the fight with his confidence high after winning his last fight in emphatic style after beating Michael Estrada in the first minute and a half of the first round.

Mexico meets the Philippines as Jose Felix, Jr. (28-1-1, 23 KOs) takes on Raymond “Foreman” Sermona (17-4-5, 8 KOs) in an eight-round lightweight bout. A nine-year professional, Sermona will be making his Macao debut at the Showdown at Sands. With 26 professional fights he is evenly matched with Felix, who has made good progress for a young fighter at just 22 and is a former super featherweight interim world title challenger.

In another Philippines-Mexico duel, Aston Palicte (16-1, 14 KOs) meets Ismael Garnica (13-5-1, 5 KOs). A professional for only three years, Garnica will be making his Macao debut in this 10-round super flyweight contest against Palicte who will also be making his first Cotai Arena appearance. Garnica will have his work truly cut out for him when he takes on a man who has amassed an incredible 14 knockouts in just 16 professional fights, including his last six. Even more staggering is the fact that five of those last six knockouts came in the first round.

Local pro “The Macao Kid” Ng Kuok Kun (6-0, 2 KOs) faces five-year pro Chingchai Kiatpracha (7-2, 3 KOs) of Thailand in what will likely be a hometown crowd favourite. The undefeated local fighter will be looking for a seventh win in his sixth consecutive fight at The Venetian Macao. His last performance was a hard fought six-round unanimous decision against Australian Stephen Attard. Kiatpracha has four more years experience than Ng, but the Macao audience will almost certainly make it hard for him to concentrate as it cheers for its homegrown hero.

Rounding out the undercard is Chinese fighter Zhou Yunfei (4-0, 1 KOs) who will take on Mexican fighter Paul Valenzuela (3-1, 2 KOs). A professional for only 10 months, Zhou makes his Cotai Arena debut in the six-round super middleweight fight. Valenzuela has more experience than Zhou, although not by much, and will likely be looking to use all of it to win over the crowd, but with only four fights under his belt, including a loss in his last fight, this matchup seems very evenly balanced.

Ticketing details:

Date and Time: March 7, 5:30pm (first bout begins 5:45pm)

Venue: The Venetian Macao, Cotai Arena

Ticket Prices: $4,680 (Gold Reserve), $1,680 (Silver Reserve), $1,280 (Bronze Reserve), $980 (A Reserve), $580 (B Reserve), $280 (C Reserve), $180 (D Reserve)

Ferry Packages: Add $108 to ticket price for a round trip Cotai Water Jet ferry ticket between Hong Kong and Macao (D Reserve excluded)

Hotel Packages: Available only through Cotai Ticketing via phone, starting at $3,760 (plus 5% government tax and 10% service charge).

Includes two tickets and one night’s accommodation at a choice of The Venetian Macao, Conrad Macao, Cotai Central, Sheraton Macao Hotel, Cotai Central, or the Holiday Inn Macao Cotai Central.

Ticketing Outlets: Cotai TicketingHong Kong Ticketing (customer service fee applies), and Macao Kong Seng Ticketing Network.

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