WBO super featherweight champion Jamel ‘Semper Fi’ Herring 21-2-1 (10) will finally get the opportunity to defend his title against Puerto Rican challenger Jonathan ‘Polvo’ Oquendo 31-6 (19) at ‘The Bubble’ at the MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas, Nevada on September 5 live on ESPN+.
The 34-year-old American was twice scheduled to make the second defence of his world title against Oquendo on July 2 and July 14 but those dates were cancelled at Herring twice tested positive to COVID-19.
“Jamel has had a run of bad luck, but his fortunes will change for the better inside the ‘Bubble’ on September 5,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum.
“Oquendo is a crafty veteran who understands this may be his last shot at a world title, and I expect him to give ‘The Fighting Marine’ one heck of a fight.”
Southpaw Herring will be returning to the ring after and almost 10 month-long layoff, the longest of his eight-year pro career.
“This postponement is a blessing in disguise because I feel 10 times better than I did three weeks ago,” Herring said.
“I’m grateful to have another opportunity to get back in the ring. I’ve fully recovered from COVID-19 and I’m more than ready for anything Jonathan Oquendo brings on September 5.
“Our team has a great game plan and we are eager to carry it out.”
The 37-year-old Oquendo has gone 5-1 in a little over five years, dropping a 10-round points decision to Lamont Roach 19-1-1 (7) in May last year. Roach would drop a competitive decision to Herring in his next fight six months later.
“I am very happy with finally getting this opportunity to challenge Herring for his world title, as the fight has been cancelled twice because of COVID-19,” Oquendo said.
“At one point, I thought that maybe the fight was not going to happen, but thanks to God, we are now ready for September 5.
“We are going to win. We are in a very positive mindset. We are going to leave everything in the ring.
“It’s now or never. It would be a great accomplishment to become world champion at 37. That’s what we are going to do.”