Mario “El Azteca” Barrios (25-0, 16 KOs), has arrived in California's Bay Area, CA, to start training camp with his coach, 2011 Trainer of the Year, Virgil Hunter. Barrios is scheduled to do battle against Ryan Karl (18-2, 11 KOs) in a twelve-round bout as part of a Showtime / Premier Boxing Champions pay-per-view show on September 26th. Barrios' WBA 140-pound regular title will be at stake against Karl. “I’m extremely excited to be defending my title on Showtime against a tough opponent like Ryan Karl,” said Barrios, whose hometown is San Antonio, Texas.
“I wanted to get a full training camp with Virgil, so I made the decision to get out to the Bay Area as soon as my fight was announced. Right now, Virgil and I are working on a great strategy for this upcoming fight. I came to camp in great shape as me and my dad Martin were putting in a lot of hard work back home. I’m going to be ready to put on a great performance come September 26th.”
Barrios captured the WBA's secondary title [Josh Taylor holds the WBA's main title in the division] with a gritty performance last September, [controversially] defeating a tough undefeated fighter in Batyr Akhmedov, a fight that happened close to a year ago. Barrios is ready to take his career to the next level. “Now that I’m champion, I’m working harder than ever to keep my belt.” Barrios continued. “I more dedicated now than ever to stay on top. I know with hard work, I’ll become one of the biggest names in the sport. I’m very grateful to my team and the fans for all their support. Everyone can expect me to take my career to new heights.”
Barrios vs. Karl will be the co-feature to the twelve-round unification bout, showcasing Jermell Charlo (33-1, 17 KOs) vs. Jeison Rosario (20-1-1, 14 KOs) for the WBC, WBA and IBF 154-pound championships. Jermall Charlo (30-0, 22 KOs) vs. Sergiy Derevyanchenko (13-2, 10 KOs) for the WBC regular middleweight title will be the opening main event on the two-part pay-per-view event.