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By Percy Lovell Crawford
Promoter and boxing Hall of Famer Oscar De La Hoya poses with top light heavyweight contender, Gilberto Ramirez. (Chris Esqueda/Golden Boy Promotions)

Achieving perfection in boxing, where one punch can change the entire course of a fight, is tough.

Most of the all-time greats have suffered defeat at some point in their career. Mexico’s Gilberto Ramirez, better known as “Zurdo,” is a rare exception: He has accomplished a perfect unbeaten record in his first 43 fights as a pro.

Top-ranked contender Dominic Boesel hopes to change that on Saturday night, live on DAZN. Ramirez wants to take his record to 44-0, while Boesel hopes to improve to 33-2. Ramirez also hopes to bring the number of opponents he has knocked out to 30, as he is predicting an early knockout against Boesel.

A win on Saturday could set up a huge opportunity for the former super middleweight champion, who sets his sights on the Canelo-Bivol winner, Beterbiev-Smith winner, or a move up to cruiserweight.

Zurdo goes a few rounds with Zenger about his upcoming fight, future plans and much more.

Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez working the body pad in the gym. Ramirez wants to up his record to 44-0 on Saturday night. (Brickhouse Boxing Club)

Zenger: How has training been going for your fight on Saturday night against Dominic Boesel?

Ramirez: It’s been great. Hard training for this training camp is finished. Now, it’s time to, sweat and make weight for Saturday night.

Zenger: It can be difficult to find footage of fighters from other countries. Has it been hard to get footage on Boesel? And, if you found some, what are your thoughts on him as a fighter?

Ramirez: He is a hard fighter. He is ranked No. 1 in the world, but he’s not on my level. I’m ready, and I will prove to everyone that I’m ready for a title fight. I’m the best light heavyweight in the division. I fought someone from Germany before, this will be the second one. This will be my night.

Zenger: You have been a professional for 13 years; you have a perfect 43-0 record. What have you learned about yourself as a fighter?

Ramirez: I have been fighting since I was a kid, and I’ve been waking up, working hard, eating healthy, and improving on the things I have learning in boxing. It seems to be paying off.

Zenger: Your last four opponents didn’t see the final bell. Would you credit that to moving up from 168 to 175 and acclimating to the light heavyweight division?

Ramirez: Yes, of course. It was the right move. My preparation and the training that we have been doing has helped, as well. I credit myself for the hard work I put in. We have been working well and working hard on everything. It’s great to have a great team and great training camp.

Zenger: You were a big super middleweight, you’re still considering a big light heavyweight, not to look too far down the line, but is cruiserweight on your radar?

Ramirez: Eventually, I will move up when my body feels ready for cruiserweight. I’m willing to fight anybody if they don’t give me a title fight. I can prove myself to everyone that I’m ready.

Zenger: I know you’re focused on your fight, but I’m sure you were paying close attention to Canelo-Bivol. Did you have a preference of who won?

Ramirez: I predicted Canelo by decision. I think people want to see that fight. It would be a huge fight for the fans if me and Canelo were to fight.

Zenger: Does it help you in terms of conditioning and making weight now that we are hitting the summer months and it’s so hot outside?

Ramirez: No, it’s a little help, but where I’m from, it’s hot and humid. I have been in Mazatlan [Mexico] for many years, and nothing compares with the weather over there.

Zenger: What are some things Boesel brings to the table that you have to either overcome or adjust to?

Gilberto Ramirez poses after successfully making weight before one of his recent outings. (Golden Boy Promotions)

Ramirez: He comes forward all the time, and he throws his left hook often. I’ve been watching a couple of tapes on him. It will be an exciting fight. I’m super excited for this fight because I’m back in the ring, I’m back in action, and I’m ready to put on a great show for all the fans.

Zenger: You got two fights in last year, how many times would you like to fight this year?

Ramirez: I would like three fights.

Zenger: Do you feel you are sharper in the ring when you are active, or does the breaks in action help?

Ramirez: Both! I appreciate the breaks because before I didn’t have any breaks. But now, it’s time to get back to work. It’s great to be back because before, we had COVID, and I couldn’t be in the gym. I was training at my house, but now it’s different. It’s great to have had the break, but now, it’s time to be busy.

Zenger: Light heavyweight is a very top-heavy division. When you look around the division with all the talent it has, what separates you from the rest of the guys at 175?

Ramirez: I’m smarter and stronger than all of them. I’m the big guy.

Zenger: What can fans expect on Saturday night from “Zurdo?”

Ramirez: They can expect fireworks on that night. I’m looking for an early knockout. I’m looking for the winner of Canelo-Bivol at the end of this year following my win. That’s what I want, and it will happen.

Edited by Fern Siegel and Matthew B. Hall

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