Just 15 months and five fights removed from his professional debut, two-time Chinese Olympic gold medallist and national icon ZOU SHIMING (4-0, 1 KO),of Guizhu, China, will step up and fight in his first 10-round bout, facing off against hard-punching veteran and three-time world title challenger LUIS "Chino" DE LA ROSA, (23-3-1, 13 KOs), of Barranquillla, Colombia. Zou, trained by Hall of Famer Freddie Roach, and De La Rosa will headline Champions of Gold, the all-action championship boxing event This Saturday! July 19, at The Venetian® Macao's Cotai Arena.
“I am pleased with my progress as a professional fighter but I want to show more of what Freddie Roach has been teaching me. Freddie has been a great teacher and an even better friend and mentor. I’m finally comfortable with the pro style of fighting.
“It may be unusual to move this fast to a 10-round fight but I have confidence in my team and if they think I’m ready, then I will be ready.
“I am not nervous about facing a vastly-more experienced fighter like De La Rosa. I’m very excited about the opportunity. He is the type of fighter I need to beat to earn a world title shot.
“I do feel the pressure of my fans in China to meet their expectations. But my amateur experience, including three Olympics and two World Championships, has prepared me for that pressure. I feel that my style and power are improving and that has bolstered my confidence.”
Zou is one of China's most revered athletes and has single handily revived professional boxing's popularity in his native country. Trained by Hall of Famer Freddie Roach, Zou won his professional debut, on April 6, 2013, via a dominant four-round unanimous decision over gritty Eleazar Valenzuela. He followed that up with six-round unanimous decision victories last year over Jesus Ortega and Juan Toscano on July 27 and November 24, respectively, and celebrated his 2014 debut with his first professional knockout February 22, stopping Yokthong Kokietgym in the seventh round. All of his professional bouts have taken place at the Cotai Arena. An Olympic legend, Zou was the world's greatest amateur light flyweight, capturing gold medals in the World Amateur Championships in 2005, 2007 and 2011, along with gold medals in the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympic Games. He also owns an Olympic bronze medal from the 2004 games, making him his nation's first Olympic medallist in boxing as well as its first boxing gold medallist in the World Amateur Championships and the Olympics. A victory for Zou, currently world-rated No. 6 by the WBA, could place him one giant step closer to a world title challenge this year.