American promoter Bob Arum has promised Jason Moloney his next fight will be an Australian blockbuster – and likely alongside George Kambosos — as a host of 2024 local boxing showdowns begin to take shape.
As first revealed by Fox Sports Australia last week, Arum wants Moloney twins Jason and Andrew both fighting on the same card where Kambosos challenges Vasiliy Lomachenko for the vacant IBF lightweight title.
ESPN reported on the weekend that fight has been booked for Perth on May 12.
It comes as Queenslander Liam Wilson has also reportedly secured a massive US showdown against fellow title challenger Oscar Valdez in Arizona on March 30.
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And the management of WBO super welterweight champ Tim Tszyu are also looking to finalise a title defence against America’s Erickson Lubin in Las Vegas for the first quarter of this year.
While the push to have Tszyu fight on the same weekend as the NRL season launch in Sin City never eventuated, his team remain keen to have The Soul Taker have his next defence in the US.
Moloney, meanwhile, is headed home.
Defending his WBO bantamweight title for the first time against Mexico’s Saul Sanchez last Sunday, the champ survived a brutal 12-round war – which included being badly cut in the third – to eventually score a gutsy decision win.
Speaking with Fox Sports Australia overnight, Moloney also revealed that as he was leaving the ring after the victory, Arum approached him to say his next fight will definitely be in Australia.
It is understood Arum is also keen to have both Jason and brother Andrew on the Perth card, although it will depend on how quickly the champ recovers from his tough first defence.
Asked what Arum had said to him after the incredible Sanchez win, Moloney told Fox Sports Australia: “Bob looked at me and said ‘Australia is next’.
“I went up to him straight after the fight – he loved it, the crowd it, so now we’ll wait and see (who the opponent is).”
Moloney defends title against Sanchez | 01:13
Already, Moloney has expressed his desire for his next bout to be a hyped unification contest against IBF superstar Emmanuel Rodriguez.
Five years ago, in his first title attempt, ‘Mayhem’ dropped a contentious split decision against Rodriguez and now wants that rematch.
“Rodriguez, that’s my pick – definitely,” he said when asked what should be next.
“The way it’s all looking, my next fight is going to be in Australia and I’d love to be part of a big show and defend my crown Down Under.
“Have the whole country behind me.
“I love fighting on the road, but there’s nothing sweeter than fighting on home soil, fighting in front of your friends and family.
“Seeing everyone who has supported me from the start.
“And I want Rodriguez.
“I’m a fighter, I want to be involved in the biggest and best fights.
“But we’ll wait and see.
“I’ll let my amazing team do that work now and prepare myself for whoever they put in front of me.”
Tsyu’s March title fight hopes dashed | 00:33
Wilson, meanwhile, is also readying to move back into the title picture just a year after suffering his own controversial loss to Mexico’s Emanuel Navarrete – which included a scales drama and the now infamous ’27 second’ knockdown.
After the March contest, in which Wilson was eventually stopped, he has since followed up with consecutive wins and now goes right back into the title frame with a shot at Valdez.
Last August, Valdez also lost a world title shot against Navarrete but the former title holder at featherweight and super featherweight hasn’t competed since.
Wilson, meanwhile, has won twice, including most recently against tough Perth fighter Jackson Jon England in December.
Immediately after the win, the Queenslander suggested he would go up in weight to fight Kambosos if his Loma fight could not be sorted.
“There’s a few plans, my team’s been working behind the scenes, and I know they have some plans for me,” Wilson said after winning on the scorecards, 96-94, 96-94, 97-93.
“But if I made a Christmas list, it would be to fight George Kambosos next year.
“That’s what I want.
“I’m happy to move up to lightweight to fight him. Let’s make this fight happen.
“Let’s make an all-Australian fight happen.
“I know (Kambosos) is having problems making a fight with Lomachenko. If he can’t make that happen, I’ll move up to lightweight to fight him.”
However, it now appears Wilson will look to continue his chase for gold at super featherweight, against Valdez.”