CONFIRMED: Portsmouth's Michael McKinson lands monumental showdown with American knockout master Vergil Ortiz Jr

Michael McKinson is heading to America after landing the biggest showdown of his professional boxing career.

Friday, 7th January 2022, 4:45 pm
Michael McKinson will face American Vergil Ortiz Jr in March. Picture: Mark Robinson/Matchroom

The Pompey Problem will face ferocious welterweight rival Vergil Ortiz Jr at a venue yet to be confirmed in the States on March 19 after both camps reached an agreement.

Tricky southpaw McKinson, 27, will get his huge chance to upset the odds and land a monumental career victory against the much-talked about American, who has won all 18 of his pro contests inside the distance.

Ortiz Jr is the top ranked welterweight in the WBO world rankings and has long been touted for future stardom in his homeland.

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The Texas-based fighter already has impressive wins over former super lightweight world champion Maurice Hooker and Lithuanian Egidijus Kavaliauskas, who he defeated to claim the vacant WBO international welterweight title in his last fight in August, on his CV.

But McKinson will be heading into this potential career-changing moment on the back of his biggest and best year yet as a professional.

McKinson, third in the WBO world rankings list, announced himself on the sport's big stage by claiming the WBO Global welterweight crown with his unanimous decision victory over Chris Kongo live of Sky Sports in March.

He then followed that victory up by taking his perfect pro record to 21-0 by defeating Polish fighter Przemyslaw Runowski in his first bout since signing a promotional deal with Matchroom Boxing in Eddie Hearn's back garden on a Fight Camp 2 show in August.

But a meeting with the devastating Ortiz Jr represents a massive leap from what he's faced previously, although it’s a contest which would catapult him into possible world title fight contention if he was to stop the American knockout king Ortiz Jr in his tracks.