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Mike Perez Ends Three Year Sabbatical in Dubai TONIGHT

Cork’s Cuban Mike Perez [24(15)-3(1)-1] will fight for the first time in three years this weekend.

The natural talent will compete for a WBA ranking title at the Hotel Atlantis The Palm, Dubai tonight.

‘The Rebel’ appears on a Legacy and Queensbury Promotions card and will take on Nigerian Tony Salam [14(9)-2(1)] over 12.

37-year-old Salam hasn’t the CV Perez boasts but is a solid enough foe to come back with. The Stoke-based Nigerian-born ‘Sugar’ has won a Southern Area title and picked up some straps in Nigeria.

The fight will be Perez’s first since he defeated Puerto Rican Keith Tapia for a ranking title in Orlando back in October of 2018.

The former amateur sensation hasn’t appeared since but has been in training and has seen a number of fights fall through including a proposed June 2019 fight with Ilunga Makabu.

The former heavyweight turned cruiserweight has been in Belfast of late training alongside Cathy McAleer and under the watchful eye of Belfast’s Panamanian Bernardo Checa.

The former world title challenger has somewhat of a stop-start career. He won heavyweight Prizefighter and has shared the ring with the likes of Alexander Povetkin, Darnell Wilson, Carlos Takam, Bryant Jennings, and Mairis Briedis but some still argue if given the right kind of opportunities he could have and still may achieve more.

Appearing alongside Perez in Dubai will be three time light middleweight world champion Austin TroutFabian Maidana and Christian Thun.

The event is promoted by Legacy Sports Management.

“Dubai stands for quality, and we are keen to bring the best Fight card to Dubai and spotlight the city as the new place to be for boxing,” said Karim Akkar, CEO, Legacy Sports Management.

“Dubai is the place where we want to build world champions in the next year. Everyone loves the city and boxers around the globe were overwhelmed with the opportunity to fight here — the legacy continues.”

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sports for a living for over 20 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com