Sources: Ramirez to face Barthelemy on April 27

Boxing

Jose Ramirez will fight Rances Barthelemy on April 27 in Fresno, California, while Vergil Ortiz Jr. will meet Thomas Dulorme in the DAZN co-feature, sources told ESPN on Sunday.

The event will mark Ramirez’s Golden Boy debut after the former junior welterweight champion parted ways with longtime promoter Top Rank.

Ramirez (28-1, 18 KOs) is ESPN’s No. 7 boxer at 140 pounds. The Olympian made four successful title defenses and unified belts before he dropped a decision to Josh Taylor in an undisputed championship fight in May 2021.

The 31-year-old has competed just twice since his lone pro defeat. Most recently, he scored an 11th-round KO of Richard Commey in March 2023. The fight against Barthelemy will be Ramirez’s 11th in his native Fresno, including his last two bouts.

Barthelemy (30-2-1, 15 KOs) is a former two-division champion. The 37-year-old Cuban had title reigns at 130 and 135 pounds but hasn’t competed in a title bout since a 2018 decision loss to Kiryl Relikh.

Barthelemy last competed in May, a majority-decision win over Omar Juarez. That performance followed a sixth-round TKO loss to Gary Antuanne Russell in July 2022.

Ortiz (20-0, 20 KOs) is ESPN’s No. 7 junior middleweight. The 25-year-old Dallas native is coming off a first-round TKO win over Fredrick Lawson in January, a bout that snapped a 17-month layoff. The bout was Ortiz’s first at 154 pounds.

Since March 2022, Ortiz has withdrawn from three fights due to health issues related to rhabdomyolysis, a condition that occurs when damaged muscle tissue releases its proteins and electrolytes into the blood. Ortiz was rated No. 3 by ESPN at 147 pounds when he was set to meet Eimantas Stanionis last year. That bout was postponed three times; first after Stanionis underwent an emergency appendectomy and then twice due to Ortiz’s rhabdomyolysis recurrence.

Now that Ortiz is set to fight for the second time in four months, the power-puncher could challenger for his first world title later this year. Ortiz is the No. 1 contender to the WBA title held by Israil Madrimov.

Dulorme (25-6-1, 16 KOs) has suffered three consecutive defeats and hasn’t competed since a first-round KO loss to rising star Jaron Ennis in October 2021.

Overall, Dulorme has won only one of his last six bouts. The 34-year-old Puerto Rican will enter the ring on the heels of a career-long 30-month layoff.

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