Elwin Soto to Fight on the Canelo Alvarez v Billy Joe Saunders Undercard in May
WBO World Light Flyweight champion Elwin Soto (18-1, 12 KOs) is looking to take his career to the next level. On April 9, he signed a co-promotional deal with Matchroom Boxing. Now, the 24-year-old resident of Mexicali, Baja California, Mexico, is set to make his Matchroom debut. According to media source ESPN Knockout, Soto will make the third defense of the WBO title on May 8 at the AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas, on the undercard of Canelo Alvarez v Billy Joe Saunders. His opponent is former world minimumweight champ Katsunari Takayama (32-8, 12 KOs).
Soto won the world title with an upset 12th round TKO stoppage win over the big-punching Angel Acosta in June of 2019. He has since defended the belt with decision victories over Edward Heno in October 2019 and Carlos Buitrago in October of 2020.
Takayama has been a fixture in the lower-weight divisions for over a decade. Because minimumweight is particularly largely overlooked, his accomplishments are not fully appreciated. To those unaware, he is a former WBC, WBO, and two-time IBF world champion at 105-pounds! When it comes to the sport’s smallest weight class, he is a luminary figure. Now the 37-year-old from Osaka, Japan is shooting for one last world title at 108 pounds.
During his first two title defenses, Soto has not displayed the form he showed during his title-winning defeat over Acosta. He will need to raise his game to ensure victory against Takayama.
Even though he is old, the Japanese warrior has what it takes to pull off what would be considered an upset. A win by Soto would move him closer to a possible unification showdown against WBA ‘Super’ World 108-pound champion Hiroto Kyoguchi.
By: Michael Wilson Jr.