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LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - JULY 26: Seniesa Estrada poses after the press conference ahead of her July 28 WBA and WBC minimumweight championship fight against Leonela Yudica, at Palms Casino Resort on July 26, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images)

Boxing

Super Bad Estrada set to defend world titles in Las Vegas

Pound-for-pound dynamo Seniesa “Super Bad” Estrada (24-0, 9 KOs) will defend her unified WBC/WBA minimumweight world titles against Argentina’s former world champion Leonela Yudica (19-1-3, 1 KO) this Friday at Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas.

In the 10-round junior lightweight co-feature, unbeaten Las Vegas native Andres “Savage” Cortes (19-0, 10 KOs) will take on Sacramento-born contender Xavier Martinez (18-1, 12 KOs).

Estrada-Yudica headlines a full card that will stream live and exclusively in the U.S. on ESPN+ beginning at 7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT.

The ESPN+-streamed action includes the return of 2016 U.S. Olympian Karlos Balderas (14-1, 12 KOs), who takes on Philadelphia’s Nahir Albright (15-2, 7 KOs) in an eight-round lightweight showdown.

Dominican Olympian Rohan Polanco (9-0, 5 KOs) steps up in class against Panamanian contender Cesar Francis (12-1, 7 KOs) in a junior welterweight tilt scheduled for eight rounds, and hard-hitting Japanese southpaw Subaru Murata (4-0, 4 KOs) looks to extend his knockout streak in a six-round junior featherweight clash.

Also in scheduled eight-rounders are lightweight prospect and former Team USA amateur standout Charlie Sheehy (6-0, 4 KOs) and Cleveland-born light heavyweight Dante Benjamin Jr. (7-0, 5 KOs).

Promoted by Top Rank, tickets starting at $50 are on sale now at Ticketmaster.com.

At Wednesday’s press conference, this is what the fighters had to say.

Seniesa Estrada:

“This is just the beginning. We’re at a time in women’s boxing where all the top women are starting to headline. So, I’m just grateful and happy with Top Rank and ESPN for allowing me to be one of the female fighters that is leading the way for the next generation and for all the women in the sport.”

“I go into every fight wanting to make a statement. I always want to show a different part of everything I can do in the ring. I never overlook any opponent. I know that she has faced tough champions before, and she is not afraid to take a risk and fight champions. But my style is unlike any other champion she’s faced.”

“Everyone thinks they’re going to shock the world when they get in the ring me. But then, that bell rings and they see that my style is just different. I’m a different fighter.”

Leonela Yudica:

“I’m very happy to have this opportunity. It’s a great pleasure, as a native from San Juan, Argentina, to be able to present myself for the first time in Las Vegas so that everyone can get to know me for the first time. It’s a great opportunity, and I am ready for this.”

“I’m positive that they have underestimated me. I have had a lot of fights, and I have a lot of experience. I defended my flyweight title 10 times. And while it is a great challenge to be going down in weight, I am ready and prepared to show that I have everything it takes to become world champion again.”

Andres Cortes:

“I’m very excited. I’d beat both of these guys [Martinez and Nova] on the same night. I’m willing to knock out two guys in the same week. I’m not worried about him [Martinez]. He’s in here looking like a homeless man. This is easy work. I look good and I feel good. And I can’t wait to smack this guy.”

“I run Vegas. This is my city. I think Martinez’s biggest mistake was leaving {trainer} Ray Woods. He’s going to say that this is his greatest camp. But he’s hunched back and he looks scared. He’s afraid. And I can’t wait to put on a good ass-whooping’.”

Xavier Martinez:

“I’m really excited to come back. In my last fight, things happened. But that’s life. It is what it is. But I’m bouncing back. I had a great camp for this one. I’m excited to go out there and do what I do. I’m ready to get back to where I need to be.”

“Working with Robert Garcia has been great. This camp went a lot better than the previous one. I had more time with him this time because he was more focused with Anthony Joshua around the time I had my first fight with him. This time, we were actually able to work more.”

Abraham Nova:

“‘My motto is, ‘No fear, no doubt.’ You have to have no fear and you have to keep moving forward. Robeisy Ramirez is a tough fighter. A lot of things didn’t go my way in that fight. But you’ve got to be mentally strong in this game. Confidence is the biggest thing that will help us fighters move forward.”

“You will always see fireworks in my fights. I come to get the knockout. Jonathan Romero is a tough opponent. He is a former world champion. I’m excited about what I’m going to do Friday night.”
Friday, July 28

 ESPN+ (7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT)
Seniesa Estrada vs. Leonela Yudica, 10 rounds, Estrada’s WBC & WBA Minimumweight World Titles

Andres Cortes vs. Xavier Martinez, 10 rounds, Junior Lightweights

Karlos Balderas vs. Nahir Albright, 8 rounds, Lightweights

Rohan Polanco vs. Cesar Francis, 8 rounds, Junior Welterweights

Abraham Nova vs. Jonathan Romero, 10 rounds, Junior Lightweights

Subaru Murata vs. Juan Centeno, 6 rounds, Junior Featherweights

Dante Benjamin Jr. vs. William Langston, 6 rounds, Light Heavyweights

Jaylan Phillips vs. Emond Driver, 4 rounds, Junior Welterweights (SWING BOUT)

Credit: Top Rank 

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