Many people’s attention around the world of boxing were turned on Dallas’ AT&T Stadium for the bout between two of the world’s top boxers in Errol Spence Jr. and Mikey Garcia over this weekend and rightfully so.
The Payne Boxing family’s attention was focused elsewhere, however, and rightfully so.
That focus was aimed at Santa Domingo, Dominican Republic where Payne Boxing saw two of it’s fighters take to the ring.
The weekend started at Casa de los Clubes on Friday night. That’s where super featherweight Juan Carlos Peña was looking for his 30th career professional win, as he faced off against Jose Luis Manuel Polanco. Peña would accomplish that milestone with relative ease, knocking Polanco out in the first round. Peña now sits at 30-1-0 (22 KO) in his career and is expecting to take a step up once he able to get across the Gulf of Mexico and into the United States.
The following day saw Payne Boxing jump right back in the ring after fighting back in February. Francis “Frenci” Fortunato was tasked with what was the biggest fight of his young career at the Coliseo Carlos Teo Cruz, as he faced Marlembron Acuna. 1:37 in Round 1, the referee stepped in and called the fight after vicious combination of right and left hook. The finishing combo was left to the body before hammering Acuna with a right to the face. With the victory, Frenci continues his torrid start to his professional career, as he advances to 8-0-0 (8 KO) in a career that began just last February. As Chiro Perez, his head trainer told us two weeks ago down in Fort Lauderdale, Frenci has the physical ability and mindset necessary to become a multiple time world champion. He sure is off to a positive start.
Now the focus for Payne Boxing turns towards April 6th in Buenos Aires, Argentina. That’s where Marcos “El Aparato” Escudero is expected to fight for the WBC Latin Light Heavyweight title. Pablo Cesar Villanueva will be the opponent for Escudero, who will be looking to advance his professional record to 9-0-0 in his professional career and claim his first professional title. The bout is currently in limbo because of an issue on Villanueva’s end, but we will continue to have updates on the situation via the Payne Boxing Facebook page throughout the next few days.
As for Payne Boxing’s other fighters, Kelvin King is headed back down to Fort Lauderdale, FL to train with world renowned trainer Chiro Perez as he eyes a possible fight on Christy Martin Promotions card on May 9th in Durham. Meanwhile, Alberto Palmetta continues his training down in West Palm Beach, FL, but as of right now, does not have a next fight on the schedule, although trainer Charles Mooney has told us Alberto is always up to fight when the opportunity presents itself. Jose Ibarra also is back training, but will be on a layoff after he failed to maintain weight before his fight that was scheduled for February 23rd.
Payne Boxing’s fighters continue to thrive and with the WBC Latin Light Heavyweight belt on the line if the April 6th fight goes through, there is a chance that manager Gardner Payne could have two belt holders under his direction. Impressive to say the least.