Agbeko-Mares World War II
Joseph Agbeko left New York for California last Sunday night armed with courage and a determination that Saturday could mark his return to the IBF bantamweight throne as he fights old foe Abner Mares in the mandatory rematch dubbed Agbeko-Mares II.
But behind the title ambition lurks the prospects of becoming a three-time world champion, and the Ghanaian has discarded peripheral matters to concentrate on the attempt to rewrite the story of the Agbeko-Mares classic.
Agbeko was dethroned by the Mexican in August this year, but the controversy that followed the majority decision compelled the IBF to order the rematch.
But on Saturday, the World Boxing Council (WBC) Silver belt will also be on offer, a package that has added a new dimension to the much-anticipated ring thriller scheduled for the Honda Centre at Anaheim, California.
In that first fight at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, Mares delivered a number of low blows which went unpunished by Referee Russell Mora, but the height of controversy was reached in Round when the referee ruled that Agbeko had been knocked down despite a blatant low blow.
But Agbeko who has labelled Saturday’s fight “a war” believes there will be no more low blows.
'There will be no more low blows this time because the world is watching. I will prove to the world that I deserved to win the last fight and I will be victorious on December 3,” he said recently at a news conference to promote the fight.
'I am not looking for the knockout on December 3; I’m looking forward to a war,' Agbeko was quoted by boxing website, boxingscene.com, as having told a recent news conference.
With Mares bragging that he would stop Agbeko, the stage is set for another classic that would entertain the world and maybe put a finality to the inconclusive first fight.