Gary Shaw Productions in association with Thompson Boxing Promotions announced Thursday that Jhonatan Romero (23-0, 12 KOs) and Kiko Martinez (28-4, 20 KOs) will clash for the IBF super bantamweight title as the co-feature attraction to Daniel Geale (29-1, 15KOs) vs. Darren Barker (25-1, 16KOs) live on HBO Boxing After Dark®.
The 12-round championship bout will take place at the Revel Casino-Hotel, Atlantic City’s newest and largest casino resort.
Romero, who hails from Colombia, recently captured the vacant IBF super bantamweight title when he traveled to Mexico and defeated Alejandro Lopezon his home turf.
"I’m very thankful to my promoters Gary Shaw and Thompson Boxing for getting me this fight on HBO," said Romero. "In my last fight I accomplished my dream of becoming a world champion and now it’s time to defend it. I know Martinez is a big puncher but I believe my boxing skills will prevail in this fight. I’m coming to win and win impressively."
Martinez who represents his country of Spain, is rated #15 by the IBF and won the vacant WBC Latino super bantamweight title in his last fight by way of knockout against Damian David Marchiano of Argentina. Martinez, known for his heavy hands, dropped Marchiano in rounds one and two before the referee stopped the bout. He’s looking to do the same against Romero.
"Romero is a very good fighter but he has never faced a powerful puncher like me," Martinez said. "Once he feels my power he’ll know he’s in for a short night. My goal is get the knockout one way or another. The fans watching will witness an explosive fight from my end."
"Jhonatan is a very talented fighter that brings a lot of excitement to the ring with his active style," said Shaw. "I believe he’s the best super bantamweight in the world today and I’m pleased that HBO will be televising his fight. He’s in a tough fight but I believe he’ll come out on top."
"We are excited that Jhonatan ’Momo’ Romero will be able to showcase his talent on HBO and make his first IBF title defense in front of a large U.S. audience," said Alex Camponovo, executive Vice President of Thompson Boxing Promotions. "Since winning the world title Romero has become a star in Colombia and we want him to make the crossover. We know Kiko Martinez will be a rigorous test for Romero but we can’t cut any corners at this level. It will be a great match because both men are ready to shine and more than willing to show their ability."