This Saturday marks the latest episode in the World Boxing Super Series season 2. This episode visits Glasgow in what is sure to be a 'must see' event.
Joint top of the bill is Belfast, Northern Ireland's WBA' Super' World Bantamweight Champion Ryan Burnett. Burnett defends his title against a legend of the sport in former four weight World Champion 'The Filipino Flash' Nonito Donaire. Burnett (19-0) under the guidance of former David Haye mentor Adam Booth has risen through the ranks in quick style winning a world title in 17 fights then unifying only one fight later. The rise is a credit to Belfast man's maturity and dedication. Burnett 26, attacks opponents with lightning quick hands which hit hard enough to command respect but possibly his most admirable attribute is his balance.
For the purist fan Burnett's feet are always in tune with one another and for me this is one of the biggest keys to his success so far. Burnetts balance allows him to skip in an out of distance and i expect him to us this against his older opponent on Saturday.
Donaire (38-5) is sure to be his biggest test. 'The Filipino Flash' in his prime was one of the very top pound for pound fighters in the world picking up world titles in four weight divisions ranging from Flyweight to Featherweight. Donaire now 35 is still a very serious threat as he leaves 126lbs where he dropped a points decision to another Belfast man Carl Frampton in April. He moves back to his beloved 118lbs division in an attempt to win the Super Series, something he describes as one of his 'final big ambitions' in boxing. At this stage in his career Donaire's biggest attribute has to be his experience.
He really has been there and done it all at the very highest level in the sport and will cause Burnett some interesting problems. Dont be surprised to see Burnett miss more shots in this fight then he has in his previous 19 meetings due to being in the ring with a master craftsman. Can Donaire roll back the years and teach the young lion a lesson? Its more than a possibility.
Whoever comes through Saturday nights encounter can look forward to a semi final with a chance to pick up another World Title along the way. Awaiting is Frank Warren promoted WBO World Bantamweight Champion Zolani Tete (28-3). The bout with Tete has also presents alot to play for and a step closer to winning the prestigious Mohammed Ali Trophy.
For me I see a potential classic and worth noting is that the WBC's vacant Diamond Title is also on the line. If Burnett doesn't get his tactics correct then he could quickly end up involved in a fire fight with Donaire, something he should try and avoid. It really is a graduation test for Burnett at the very highest level of the sport. Donaire is wonderful counter puncher as seen in his chilling knockout victories over Vic Darchinyan and Fernando Montiel and has never lost at 118lbs.
Dont be surprised to see Burnett forced to come through a few sticky patches in the fight, patches I fully expect him to come through and win a wide decision or even a late stoppage. However this is based on his tactics being perfect of keeping Donaire moving and not staying in the pocket. Saturdays fight will no doubt see us left in awe of the class on show, but could Donaire shock the favourite Burnett and win yet another World Title?