SAN ANTONIO, Texas – Mario Barrios ended 2018 with a title belt. Now Barrios looks to make the next step in his young career.
Barrios, who is ranked the number one contender in the WBA Super Lightweight division, will face undefeated Mexican boxer Richard Zamora in a 10-round super lightweight bout live on Showtime this Saturday. Their fight will be the co-feature to the main event, a title defense between Gervonta Davis and Hugo Ruiz live from Carson, California.
“El Azteca" has been working out in Oakland under the training of Virgil Hunter. Barrios enters Saturday's fight with a six knockout streak and a record of 22-0 with 14 knockouts.
Barrios, a graduate from Southwest High School, won the WBA Inter-Continental Welterweight title back in late July. He's had plenty of time to stay fit and focused but the announcement of this bout came less than two weeks before fight night. Some fighters may be hesitant about the tight turnaround for a big fight but that kind of pressure doesn't phase Barrios.
“There's no worries at all," Barrios told KSAT 12 Sports this week. "I've had one of the best training camps in my career going into this fight. I’ll be at my best on fight night and I’m confident in my ability to come out on top.”
Zamora, who is known by his nickname "Diamante" is two years older than Barrios and has never fought in the United States. The boxer from San Luis Potosi brings with him a 19-2 record with 12 knockouts and has won his last five fights. His two losses came by the way of knockout.
“Zamora is the toughest opponent of my career. He’s very confident coming into this fight having won five fights in a row. I’ll be making adjustments as the fight goes on. If he wants to bang or box, I’ll be ready.”
Barrios has been making a name for himself in the world of boxing. You mix in an undefeated record, a legendary trainer, a fighting technique that only seems to get better, and you start to get attention from the networks too. Saturday's fight will be Mario's first on Showtime.
“This fight will be the co-main event, my first on Showtime. In my last fight, I was the opening bout, so I’m moving up. I like to mix it up so the fans watching are in for a treat. I’m going to be explosive, my style is perfect for Showtime Championship boxing.”
Barrios added, "Right now, I'm ranked number one in the WBA, so a victory gets me one step closer to a world title shot. This is the biggest fight of my career and I'm taking it very serious. You will see my greatness from me on fight night.”
Saturday's broadcast starts at 9 p.m. CST and can be seen on Showtime, Showtime Sports YouTube Channel and the Showtime Boxing Facebook page. The event is promoted by Mayweather Promotions, TGB Promotions and Sampson Boxing.
Daniel P. Villanueva has worked with KSAT 12 Sports for over 15 years and is an award-winning sports producer. To submit story ideas, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Photos by Brett Ostrowski/Team Barrios