Yuriorkis Gamboa remembers so well the time when he defected from Cuba while he was training in Venezuela. He had given Cuba national pride with all his amateur achievements.
However, he felt it was the time that he follows his own dream. He wanted to be a professional boxing champion and most especially he wanted to give his family a better life. He would never be what he is now if he hadn’t moved out.
Nineteen fights later, Gamboa is one of the biggest names in the featherweight division, just at par with his equally talented nemesis Juan Manuel Lopez. Together they are the two Ying Yang that had dominated this division.
Gamboa has long been waiting that someday their paths will cross. However, he understands it will happen when the right time comes. A fight of this magnitude needs a massive marketing campaign, and to make this fight so compelling he would have to do his part.
And that is what boxers are paid to do…fight.
Jorge Solis may not be a household name to boxing fans. However, he fought Manny Pacquiao four years ago for eight rounds. He is three inches taller than Gamboa and knows how to use his jab.
Solis, who normally fights in the super featherweight division, is going down to featherweight to face Gamboa. This is not an easy fight for Gamboa, but this is what he really wants.
This is the road or the path that he wanted to take. While others take the easy route, for him, he wanted every challenge—every difficulty he wants to encounter. Every fight is always a preparation for the bigger fight ahead.
He knows that the well-prepared fighters make fights.
When Rogers Mtagwa almost dominated Juanma, he wanted to know and feel Mtagwa’s power. It was the fight he wanted to take and took only two rounds to disposed Rogers way back in 2010 with Lopez as his co-header fighting the light-hitting Steven Luevano.
While Lopez is fighting Orlando Salido in April (the same fighter Gamboa fought and won last year), Gamboa is going to dangerous waters again against a solid contender in Solis.
It has been quite a journey since Gamboa defected against Cuba. He knows his speed and power could take him to greater heights, but he feels he still has a lot of things to prove.
Juanma is slowly becoming a complete fighter, and he wanted to fight him with all bases covered. Yes, this is becoming a waiting game, but Gamboa is in no rush. One fight at a time…with another base to cover before that one big swing.
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