Ajax fighters headline Pickering Casino Resort Arena’s first event


Published January 18, 2023 at 10:42 am

Brandon Cook against Jamie Munguia for the WBO super welterweight title in 2018. Photo by Al Bello

The Arena at Pickering Casino Resort will be baptized with a big bang January 28 when United Boxing Promotions brings the sweet science to mark the first event at the facility.

Two local fighters will headline the card, with unbeaten Ajax welterweight Sukhdeep Singh Bhatti bringing his 13-0 record and his legion of fans to the ring to fight German Victor Ionascu (11-2), while fellow Ajacian Brandon ‘Bad Boy’ Cook (23-2) faces Richard Holmes of Jamaica (19-12) in a super welterweight bout.

The boxing card, which will feature four other fights on the evening in the 2,500-seat just opened entertainment venue, is already sold out.

Other bouts include super lightweights Mark Smithers of Barrie (9-0) against Jorge Amaya Diaz of Mexico (7-4); highly regarded middleweight Melinda Watpool of Toronto (1-0) vs Mexico’s Valerie Alonzo (1-3-1); and unbeaten heavyweight (and former Olympian) Ricardo Brown of Brantford (9-0) and rising Jamaican middleweight Kemahl Russell (13-1), with their opponents still undetermined.

Cook, who fought Mexican superstar Jamie Munguia (still unbeaten at 41-0 and now fighting as a middleweight) for the WBO super welterweight title in Las Vegas in 2018, was last in action September 10 at Brampton’s CAA Centre when he took out Stepan Horvath via TKO.

Singh also fought on that card, going the distance with tough Italian fighter Xhuljo Vrenozi before earning a unanimous decision.

Unbeaten Ajax welterweight Sukhdeep Singh

United Promotions will be back in Brampton’s CAA Centre February 25 with a card headlined by Orangeville’s Josh Wagner – who will take on Vrenozi in a welterweight bout – and Brampton’s Joshua Frazer, who will fight super welterweight Uriel Hernandez of Mexico.

Both Wagner (13-0) and up-and-comer Frazer (7-0) will be putting unbeaten professional record on the line.

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