Former WBO junior middleweight champion Jaime Munguia 42-0 (33) is expecting a tough test when he faces former two-time super middleweight world title challenger John ‘The Gorilla’ Ryder 32-6 (18) at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona on Saturday night.
“This is a big challenge, it’s a tough fight. Without a doubt this is a big test,” Munguia told Fightnews. “It’s obvious that all the pressure is on me but I will come out with the victory.”
Munguia recently changed trainers, swapping our Erik Morales for Freddie Roach. The Ryder bout will be his first under his new coach.
“I feel good. I have had a good camp, I am ready and prepared. I have worked hard in this preparation,” Munguia said.
“I am very happy to be working with Freddie Roach, I have learned new things here. When working with someone new, your going to learn new and different things. The truth is, I am comfortable with him and I will definitely benefit from his coaching.
“The work we did with Erik was working technique, being technical. With Freddie, it’s working more aggressively, more offence. It’s just a matter of implementing the things you learn. With Erik, (Roberto) Alcazar and Freddie, everything I have learned, I utilise it in the ring.”
In his last outing the 27-year-old Mexican delivers a Fight of the Year performance in his 12-round brawl with three-time world title challenger Sergiy Derevyanchenko 14-5 (10) in Ontario, California last June. Munguia won the slugfest by razor-thin margin on the cards after a 12th round body shot knockdown edged him ahead of the teak-tough Ukrainian.
“It was a tough fight but we expected it,” Munguia said. “Dereveyanchenko is no pushover, he is one tough fighter and I prevailed. In part because of my dedication and the time I’ve put in the gym. I had to dig deep and finish strong but in the end I knew I had the victory.
“I don’t feel that I have to top that performance. This is a big risk fight and I have to be cautious, Ryder is a very tough strong fighter but I’m confident that I will win.”
The winner of the Munguia vs Ryder fight will put themselves in the running to face undisputed super middleweight champion Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez 60-2-2 (39). The 33-year-old Mexican superstar already outpointed British southpaw Ryder, 35, in Mexico in May last year.
“I am not overlooking John Ryder, I am focused on this and have been working hard for a reason,” Munguia said. “I know what I have to take to beat him. It’s obviously a big motivation for the potential to fight the face of boxing Canelo. I have never called him out but simply earned my position in line.”
Munguia added: “This is going to be a great year for me. I will start off with this fight with John Ryder, and hopefully get the knockout. There are bigger and better things up ahead.”