Whilst we all knew that China's unbeaten superstar Zou Shiming (4-0, 1) would be in the ring on July 19th we didn't have a clue about who he would be fighting. That all changed over the last day or so as it was announced he would be fighting Colombian Luis De La Rosa (23-3-1, 13), himself a former-multi-time world title challenger.
For Shiming this is a huge step up in class from fighting the likes of Yokthong Kokietgym, who Shiming stopped in 7 back in February, and seems to suggest that his team are now very confident that their man is ready for not just a 10 rounder but to prove his credentials against world class opponents. It may seem silly, given the amount of hatred Shiming gets across social media, but it really seems like he's an ambitious and driven fighter as opposed to the cherry picking political that many seem to feel he is.
Whilst we won't go as far as to describe Shiming as a world class professional with limitless potential he is certainly a better fighter than he is given credit for and a win over De La Rosa would be impressive, especially given the novice pro status that Shiming has.
For those wondering about the Colombian he has been in the ring with Raul Garcia (LSD12), Merlito Sabillo (LTKO8) and Moises Fuentes (LTKO1) suggesting that whilst he's never going to be a world title holder he's not an awful fighter and he should allow Shiming to be compared to the likes of Sabillo or Fuentes both of whom have held world title in the last year or so.
With reports suggesting that Shiming will be fighting Alberto Rossel for the WBA Light Flyweight title in November this is a perfect step up and a serious test for the Chinese fighter who, in fight #5, looks to be showing more ambition than many of the fighters who have been described as more talented than he is. Whilst he will never silence the doubters Shiming deserves full credit for this step up and if he comes out on top we won't begrudge him his title fight, even though we know many will continue to rip on Shiming for everything he does.
(Image courtesy of Top Rank)
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