Watching it happen for his friend and promotional stablemate has left Angel Fierro confident that he, too, is in store for a big year.
The rising lightweight contender has firm goals in place for 2023, including a shot at the division’s top prize. The dream has become more intensified after watching Mauricio Lara capture the WBA featherweight title, following a seventh-round knockout of Leigh Wood just two weeks ago in Nottingham, England.
Tijuana’s Fierro isn’t quite yet in position to challenge undisputed lightweight champion Devin Haney or secondary WBA titlist Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis. A win versus Uruguay’s Eduardo Estela (14-1, 9KOs) on Saturday, he hopes, will help at least further his cause.
“I am focused on Eduardo, but once I win, I will have my hand up asking for my opportunity,” insisted Fierro. “I’ve been on the same card as Mauricio Lara and he motivates me a lot, knowing that a fellow Mexican friend got his shot and became World champion, and I know my chance will come soon.
“Devin Haney, Vasiliy Lomachenko, Ryan Garcia, Gervonta Davis, Isaac Cruz; they are all on my list to fight next.”
Fierro (20-1-2, 16KOs) has appeared on the same card as Lara—both of whom are co-promoted by BXSTRS—for each of his past two starts, including his last fight on October 22 in Mexico City. Lara headlined the show, when stopped Jose Sanmartin in the third round of their DAZN main event. Fierro appeared in the chief support with a sixth-round knockout of Philadelphia’s Jeremy Cuevas.
The win washed away the bad taste that came from his disappointing ten-round draw with former title challenger Juan Carlos Burgos last May 5 in his adopted hometown of San Diego, California. Instead, Fierro recaptured some of the glory that came with his come-from-behind, sixth-round knockout of former secondary WBA junior lightweight titlist Alberto Machado nearly two years ago on the road in Salinas, Puerto Rico.
It was from that moment when Fierro gained the taste for a big fight in the talent-laden lightweight division. The hope is a win in his first DAZN main event—and fifth overall appearance on the platform—will play a part in creating greater demand for his services at the elite level.
“I will show the world that I am a fighter at 135 who is ready for the best,” vowed Fierro, who is 4-0-1 since a ten-round loss to Alex Martin more than three years ago. “I am looking for my World title shot and ready to hunt the best down.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox