Robeisy Ramirez believes Japanese exposure will help momentum towards securing unification with stablemate Lopez

Robeisy Ramirez (12-1) is aiming to lay down a marker when he faces Satoshi Shimizu (11-1) as part of the supporting cast to the highly anticipated super-bantamweight encounter between reigning WBC & WBO world champion Stephen Fulton & the three-weight world & undefeated undisputed bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue. The event takes place on the 25th of July in Tokyo, Japan and will be the second time Ramirez has boxed outside of the United States as a professional.

Ramirez will be making the first defence of his WBO world featherweight title against Shimizu following Ramirez’s comprehensive victory against Isaac Dogboe via unanimous decision in April of this year.

Ramirez of Cuba, a two-time Olympic gold medalist, faces fellow two-time Olympian Shimizu, of whom, despite both fighters having a long amateur career, never faced each other as amateurs but believes the upcoming fight with Shimizu will be great exposure for him and his career as a whole.

“This is my first time going to Japan. At first, I was a little doubtful, more so because of the holidays and spending time with the family, but from another point of view it is a great exposure for my career. We were in Scotland and it was great. The fans are happy with my career. Everyone who has been to Japan says that it is a tremendous experience and that I am going to have a good time, beyond doing the job. That’s how I’ve viewed it. I will go with a lot of respect, I will retain my title, and then I will see what that culture is like” when speaking to reporter & filmmaker George Ebro.

“[Me and Shimizu] never crossed paths. If my mind does not fail me, in 2012 he won a bronze medal at 56 kilos. He lost to Luke Campbell, who became an Olympic champion. I’m never overconfident, but you’ll never see me worried. I trust my preparation, my corner, my boxing. When I do a good preparation there is no reason to worry. I have the ability to change things within the same round.”

However, despite Ramirez’s focus on the immediate task at hand, it also can not be ignored that Top Rank (who promote Ramirez) could very well be edging towards a unification between Ramirez and another one of their breakout fighters of the last twelve months in the shape of current IBF world champion, Luis Alberto Lopez (28-2). Lopez has had a stellar twelve months, which has featured the capture of the IBF world title against Josh Warrington in December before following that success up with a stunning knockout victory over Michael Conlan in May.

Ramirez, if successful, says that he will be pushing to secure a unification with his Top Rank stablemate despite feeling disrespected by a particular member of Lopez’s team, but not with Lopez himself.

“That fight is going to happen as long as I retain the title. I have a lot of respect for him as a boxer. However, part of his team is not something that deserves my respect. One of the managers, I know him. I don’t know if he is a manager or what he has to do with him, he is a person who from what I have heard and know is not trustworthy. Second, his physical trainer, Memo Heredia, who is one of my detractors on social networks, spoke a lot of nonsense about me.

“I have a lot of respect for Lopez as a boxer. In his interviews he talks about 126 pounds, he doesn’t talk about Robeisy Ramírez. I don’t know if after his last fight if he mentioned me. I have always mentioned him because both he and Wood, like Warrington, are in my division, I want to fight with them. It’s not personal with him. I will always go from the front. I don’t speak from behind. I have respect for him as a champion, but his team does not deserve my respect. Everyone wants that fight, but I know I’m not going to underestimate Shimizu.”