Dominican super lightweight Victor "Mermelada" Cayo (31-3, 22 KOs) knows the dire consequences on his boxing career another loss will have on his record and is training like his future as a top contender depends on it.
Cayo is in the final stretch of his preparations to meet Emmanuel "The Tranzforma" Taylor (16-1, 11 KOs) at the Superstar Theater at the Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey on March 8.
The 10-round, co-featured bout Russian heavywieght powerhouse Magomed "Mago" Abdusalamov (16-0, 16 KOs) defending his WBC United States (USNBC) heavyweight title against once-beaten former Puerto Rican Olympian Victor Bisbal (21-1, 15 KOs).
Once rated as high as #3 in the world, 28-year-old Cayo has stumbled badly of late, losing by knockout to Lamont Peterson in July 2011 and then dropping a shock tko defeat to shopworn former champion Nate Campbell in March 2012.
Since then, Cayo has steadied the ship somewhat with four straight victories over solid, but lesser-known opposition. Taylor, however, represents his first real test at a higher level since the double disasters.
"I know what’s at stake," said Cayo through an interpreter. "I have to beat this guy and look good if I’m going to fight for a world title. I have trained like everything I worked for is on the line in this fight and in many ways it is."
Cayo, who started boxing at the age of 11, has spent his entire adult life dreaming of one day wearing a championship belt.
"I have worked my whole life for a shot at a title,” said Cayo. “I have been very close a couple times and things went wrong. I cannot let Taylor take away my chance for another try. Every fight I fight from now on, I will treat as though it is my world championship fight because if I lose I may never get one. I’m not coming to Atlantic City to do anything but show the world Victor Cayo is one of the world’s best."
Headlining the undercard will be Virgin Islands-based "The Hawk Flock", the sons and nephew of former world champion Julian "The Hawk" Jackson.
February 28, 2013