Shinard Bunch, a super lightweight prospect with over 400 amateur fights, returns to SHOBOX: The New Generation in his toughest challenge to date against undefeated Argentine Hugo Alberto Roldan on Friday, September 9 in the main event of a stacked tripleheader live on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
The developmental series features six prospects with a combined record of 110-3-3 and returns to Bally’s Atlantic City Hotel & Casino, site of the first SHOBOX® 21 years ago.
After going 7-0-1 in 2021, Bunch (19-1-1, 15 KOs) and the Freddy Fundora-trained Roldan (21-0-1, 7 KOs) will square off in a 10-round super lightweight bout. The co-feature matches undefeated Filipino prospect Bernard Angelo Torres (16-0, 7 KOs) against once-beaten Dominican Frency Fortunato Saya (13-1, 10 KOs) in an eight-round featherweight attraction. The telecast opens with SHOBOX returnee Janelson Bocachica (17-0-1, 11 KOs), who fought main event headliner Bunch to a split draw in July 2021, taking on once-beaten KO artist Roiman Villa (24-1, 24 KOs) in an eight-round welterweight battle.
The event is promoted by Sampson Boxing and features four fighters new to SHOBOX.
“SHOBOX continues its tradition of presenting evenly matched fights between determined prospects, giving fans what they have long come to expect from us — a glimpse of tomorrow’s stars today,” said Gordon Hall, executive producer for SHOBOX: The New Generation. “Shinard Bunch certainly fits the bill as a champion-in-waiting with his extensive amateur background and willingness to take on all comers. In Hugo Alberto Roldan he’s facing his most difficult test, given Roldan’s experience and relentless style. The co-feature between Bernard Angelo Torres and Frency Fortunato Saya is a can’t-miss action fight, and the telecast opener with Janelson Bocachica and Roiman Villa is a battle of power-punchers that should be thrilling for as long as it lasts.”
Here is a closer look at the matchups:
Bunch vs. Roldan – 10-Round Super Lightweight Main Event Bout
Managed by Hall of Famer J. Russell Peltz, the 23-year-old Bunch has been extremely active since turning pro in 2019, fighting five times in 2020, eight times in 2021, and twice so far this year. Since his controversial split draw with Bocachica in his SHOBOX debut, Bunch has won four fights in a row, including three by way of stoppage. Bunch’s only pro loss came in 2019 in just his third fight, a unanimous decision loss to SHOBOX alum and amateur standout Paul Kroll (9-0-1, 6 KOs). Bunch had more than 400 amateur fights and started boxing at age 7, earning a No. 3 national ranking from the 2016 Nationals and a spot on the USA Boxing national team. A native of Queens, N.Y., Bunch currently lives and trains in Trenton, N.J.
“Fighting on SHOBOX in a co-main event was a step-up for me in 2021,” said Bunch. “But now, I’m the main event. Growing up with the name Showtime, this is literally something I have dreamed about since I was five years old. Being able to do this in front of my friends and family is unbelievable. I’m blessed to be a main event on SHOBOX and I’m definitely ready to show the world why I’m at this level.”
Promoted by Sampson Lewkowicz, Roldan, 29, recently relocated to Coachella, Calif. where he began training under the guidance of Freddy Fundora, father of WBC Interim Super Welterweight Champion Sebastian Fundora. A native of La Banda, Santiago del Estero, Argentina, Roldan will be making his SHOBOX and United States debut on September 9 and has fought 20 of his 22 professional bouts in his country. A clever boxer who moves in and out of range using his footspeed and switches from orthodox to southpaw, Roldan owns wins over German del Castillo, Lucas Bastilla and Emiliano Dominguez twice and has never faced an opponent with a losing record.
“I am ready to show my boxing skills to the world,” said Roldan, who had a 56-1 amateur record. “I can’t wait to fight in the United States. I am so thankful for this opportunity and can’t wait to take a big leap forward with this fight in my journey to a world championship.”
Torres vs. Saya – 8-Round Featherweight Bout
The twenty-six-year-old Filipino Torres had a long, storied amateur career in both his native Philippines and Norway that included three amateur wins over childhood friend Mark Magsayo, former WBC Featherweight World Champion. A talented southpaw, Torres made his pro debut in Norway in 2017 and is coming off a career-best win over then 13-4-1 Mauro Perouene in Madrid in January. When he was 14, he moved to Norway where he met his trainer and mentor Kjell Soerum and became a seven-time national champion as part of an amateur career that totaled 160 bouts.
“This is a great opportunity for me that I plan to take full advantage of on September 9,” said Torres. “Sampson discovered Manny Pacquiao so the fact that he has noticed me is something that motivates me to be a world champion and succeed in America. I know that my style will be popular there. It’s going to be a great fight. I hope to fight in a world championship in 2023.”
Born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and currently residing in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Saya has fought just once in the U.S, stopping Julio Buitrago in two rounds in Daytona Beach in August 2020. Prior to that win, he had beaten two consecutive undefeated opponents in then 14-0 Marcos Muniz and then 6-0 Misael Vasquez. Saya’s lone blemish came at the hands of Argentine Alberto Ezequiel Melian in a 10-round unanimous decision loss in Argentina in which Saya sent Melian to the canvas four times. Saya fought four times in 2021 but has yet to step into the ring in 2022. Most recently, he won a 10-round unanimous decision over Alejandro Jair Gonzalez in his hometown of Santo Domingo last December.
“I’m excited to have the opportunity to fight on SHOBOX and to showcase my skills to the world,” said Saya, 24. “I promise to put on a great show for the fans and show everyone that I am one of the top featherweight boxing prospects in the world. Bernard Torres is a very skilled boxer with a lot of experience in the ring. I know he will come ready to fight. However, this fight and this opportunity are so important to me, my family, my team and my country. I will fight for all of them, leave everything in the ring and come out victorious.”
Bocachica vs. Villa – Eight-Round Welterweight Bout
Fighting out of Detroit, Mich., Bocachica is just 23 and already has six years of pro experience, including three appearances on SHOBOX. Last July, he fought Bunch to a 10-round split-draw in the co-main event. Prior to that, he earned his best win to date, a majority decision win over previously unbeaten Mark Reyes, Jr. An aggressive, come-forward fighter, Bocachica began boxing at age eight and boasts an amateur record of 60-5, including a victory against Brandun Lee in the finals to win the 2014 U.S. Junior National Olympics. He is trained by his father, Nelson Figueroa.
“I’m excited to be back on SHOWTIME and I’m looking forward to putting on my best performance so far,” said Bocachica. “I feel good and I’m ready to take over the sport of boxing and end careers, humbly.”
All 24 of Venezuelan sharpshooter Villa’s victories are by way of stoppage. Since a 12-round split-decision loss to Marcos Villasana in April 2019, Torres has stopped all five of his opponents in five rounds or less. He owns a fourth-round KO over then 20-1-1 Mexican Miguel Parra Ramirez in Mexico and most recently stopped Andres Garcia in Uruguay on July 29. Born in Rosario, Venezuela, Villa had a long amateur career, finishing with a record of 138-9 before turning pro in 2015.
“This is a great opportunity, and I am very honored to make my U.S. debut on SHOBOX,” said the 29-year-old Villa. “SHOBOX is known to be the starting place of great champions and I am ready to show my talent and show how strong I am.”