Felix Alvarado Eager And Thankful Ahead Of His Upcoming Fight Against DeeJay Kriel
The COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll on boxing. As a result, 2020 has been a wasted one for many boxers, full of hard luck, and missed opportunities. That has especially been the case for Felix Alvarado (35-2, 30 KOs). The COVID-19 pandemic, plus dealing with personal illness, has resulted in the 31-year-old from Managua, Nicaragua being out of the ring for the last 21-months.
That has especially been the case for Felix Alvarado (35-2, 30 KOs). The COVID-19 pandemic plus dealing with personal illness has resulted in the 31-year-old from Managua, Nicaragua being out of the ring for the last 21-months.
He returns to the ring to make the second defense of the IBF World Junior Flyweight title against former IBF Strawweight World champion DeeJay Kriel (16-1-1, 8 KOs) on January 2, 2021, at the American Airlines Arena in Dallas, Texas.
BESET BY DISAPPOINTMENTS
When the champ signed with Golden Boy Promotions in February 2019, it looked like his career was about to take an upswing. But he missed out on a unification fight opportunity in December 2019. Things started to spiral downhill soon after. The 31-year-old from Managua, Nicaragua sat down with Ring Magazine to detail what has been a tumultuous time in life.
“While these have been difficult times, I am happy to finally be defending my title. For me, this is a very exciting bout due to the fact that it is my United States debut. I will be fighting against a great former IBF 105-pound champion. I’ve worked hard. I anticipate having my arm raised in victory.
It has been a little frustrating. I was scheduled to fight a unification bout at the end of last year (2019) against WBC title-holder Kenshiro Teraji (17-0, 10 KOs). And that bout was postponed due to me having a bronchial infection.
The Kriel bout was scheduled for April (2020), a pandemic hit and we have had to wait such a long time to get it done. However, I thank God that my family and I have been able to escape the COVID-19 virus and finally this bout will get done.”
NOT AN EASY TASK
Kriel is no joke as an opponent. He is a skilled and very technically sound fighter. From this reporter’s analysis of his fights on tape, the 25-year-old from Boksburg, Gauteng, South Africa, can do a bit of everything. With the ability to fight equally outside and in the pocket, he has the look of someone who could give the champion all he can handle.
Despite his reputation as a pressure fighter and two-fisted power, Alvarado takes an analytical approach to his upcoming opponent.
“Due to the long layoff, I have had time to see some of his fights. After studying him, there are some things we see. And I’m sure there are some things he sees.
However, I know all fights are different, and sometimes adjustments need to be made during the fight. But, in the end, I’m sure we will both put forward our best and may the best man win.”
This is a matchup of the power-punching champion facing a challenger who prefers to box. For Alvarado, he is just happy at getting the chance to, at long last, trade punches and do what he loves to do the most.
By: Michael Wilson Jr.