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China's Olympic Boxing Star Prepares For First Professional Fight

posted 27 Mar 2013, 08:35 by Mpelembe   [ updated 27 Mar 2013, 08:36 ]

Double Olympic boxing gold medallist, Zou Shiming, meets Hong Kong fans ahead of his professional debut in Macau.

HONG KONG, CHINA (MARCH 27, 2013)(REUTERS) - Double Olympic boxing gold medallist Zou Shiming met fans in Hong Kong on Wednesday ahead of his professional debut in Macau next week.

The Chinese flyweight will enter the paid ranks on April 6 when he faces Mexican Eleazar Valenzuela in a four-round bout.

Zou, who won light flyweight gold at both Beijing and London and bronze in Athens, built his success on fast hand speed and body movement and an ability to throw punches from all angles, but it is thought that his style could come unstuck against heavy-punching professionals. He admits he still has a lot to learn.

"For sure my strength is that I've been in so many Olympic Games, and have been in so many fights. But in my career, I'm brand new. So that means I lack experience too," Zou, China's most successful amateur boxer, told Reuters TV.

Zou said he couldn't wait to headline the card which features top-of-the-bill bout Filipino-American Brian "Hawaiian Punch" Viloria defending his WBO and WBA flyweight titles against Mexican Juan Francisco Estrada.

"An international fight like this attracts so much media. That's why I feel so excited. To fight on a stage like this, under so many lights, it's a dream and gives me so much happiness!" he said.

Filipino boxing fan, Ian Gonzales, said the fact that Shiming was fighting alongside his idol, Viloria, would put them both on the map.

"I think it will be a good fight because they are both Asian. And this is the first time that both Asians are going to have big fights like this one," he said.

The nine-bout event is due to appear on cable TV in the United States. Zou, 31, was China's first Olympic boxing medallist.