Soliman-Ornelas to collide on Showtime


Soliman-Ornelas to collide on Showtime

Rivalries” – one friendly; one bitter – will be the prevailing theme this coming Friday night when Goossen Tutor Promotions presents a world class boxing event at the Soboba Casino in San Jacinto, California.  In the main event of Showtime’s  “ShoBox: The New Generation” broadcast – Australian Sam “King” Soliman and Mexican Enrique Ornelas -- will be pitted against each other in a scheduled ten-round middleweight bout.  Adding spice to this rivalry of prominence will be the presence of former world bantamweight champion Wayne McCullough, who is the trainer for Ornelas.


In the scheduled eight-round co-feature, undefeated heavyweights Travis “Freight Train” Walker and Jason “Big Six” Estrada will renew their bitter rivalry from their amateur days leading up to the 2004 Olympic Games. 


Also featured on the card will be the undefeated super middleweight Dirrell Brothers – Andre and Anthony – as well as talented heavyweight Malcolm “The Showstopper” Tann and undefeated middleweight Francisco Santana.


“We are extremely excited to be working with Tribal Chairman Robert Salgaldo and Soboba Casino,” promoter Dan Goossen exclaimed.  “To bring an event of this magnitude to the many fans in the outlining areas of Soboba, and featuring such an array of impressive rising talent makes this a show not to be missed.”


Tired of unwilling champions and top contenders to risk they’re position against him, Soliman (32-8, 13 KOs) did the next best thing, give an opportunity to a rising middleweight contender in Ornelas.  Soliman will risk his #3 WBC, #4 IBF and #3 WBA ranking against the hungry and determined Ornelas (25-2, 15 KOs).  “I need to send a statement to (Jermain) Taylor and the other champions that I will keep on coming until I get my chance,” stated Soliman.  If I have to fight every top contender to get to the champion, I’m ready.  I love performing in front of the fans and a television audience.”

The entertaining and evenly matched main event put together by matchmaker Tom Brown has most experts divided on the outcome.  “This is a meaningful main event with a lot on the line for both fighters,” Goossen said.  “Sam is the biggest name Enrique has faced and a win would move him up significantly in the middleweight ratings.  For Sam, a victory leads to a well deserved world title shot.”


Walker (21-0-1, 17 KOs), the 2003 National Golden Gloves Champion from Tallahassee, Florida, will be seeking retribution for three amateur losses at the hands of Providence, Rhode Island native Estrada (7-0, 1 KO) – the last of which was to represent the United States in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece.   


The big hitting Walker knows a win puts him into the heavyweight picture.  “I’m ready for Friday’s fight and will let my actions in the ring speak my words,” Walker said.  Goossen stated, “It’s a must win for Walker.  We believe he will win, plain and simple.  The professional experience is on his side.”


Andre and Anthony Dirrell, from Flint, Michigan, are on their way to becoming to the super middleweight division what brothers Marvin Hagler and Robbie Sims were when they were dominating the middleweight division back in the 1970s and 80s.  Andre (8-0, 5 KOs), a 2004 U.S. Olympic Bronze medalist, is scheduled to face Salt Lake City, Utah’s James Sundin (6-4, 3 KOs) in a six-rounder.  Brother Anthony (10-0, 9 KOs) is slated to hook up with James North (8-14-2, 3 KOs), from Weston, Virginia in another scheduled six-round super middleweight contest.


A native of Chandler, Arizona, Tann (20-2, 11 KOs) will be opposed by hard-punching Joe Stofle (10-7-2, 9 KOs), from St. Charles, Missouri in a scheduled six-round heavyweight tilt, and hot Las Vegas, Nevada prospect Santana (4-0, 3 KOs) will fight a four-round middleweight bout.


Doors to the Soboba Casino Arena open at 5:00 pm.  First bout is scheduled for 6:00 pm.  First televised bout is at 8:00 pm (All times posted are Pacific).  Tickets priced at $75 VIP Ringside, $55 Ringside and $30 General Admission are available at the Soboba Casino Box Office, 23333 Soboba Road, San Jacinto, CA  92581.  For more information, call 1-800-4 SOBOBA or go to the Soboba Casino website at