Sunny Edwards aiming to become unified flyweight world champion – Jesse Rodriguez stands in his way


Sunny ‘Showtime’ Edwards is totally confident he will be heading back to the UK with two world flyweight titles in his possession after tomorrow’s unification clash with Jesse ‘Bam Bam’ Rodriguez.

The 27-year-old from Croydon signed with Matchroom Boxing so that he could land career-defining bouts.

And now he puts his IBF title on the line against WBO champion Rodriguez in a clash of two undefeated fighters in Glendale, Arizona.

Texas-born Rodriguez (18-0, 11KOs) has already won a belt in the weight division above – making two defences of the WBC super-flyweight title he won off Carlos Cuadras – before claiming the vacant WBO title in April.

September 21, 2023; Orlando, Florida; WBO flyweight champion Jesse Rodriguez speaks at the press conference announcing his December 16, 2023 unification bout against IBF flyweight champion Sunny Edwards. The bout will take place at the Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona. Mandatory Credit: Melina Pizano/Matchroom.

Edwards (20-0, four KOs) has made four defences since ending South African Moruti Mthalane’s lengthy reign in April 2021.

All of his points wins have been by unanimous decision and underline his superiority.

“I know I’m the best in the world and I’m waiting for someone to show me that they are even on levels of competitiveness,” said Edwards on

Matchroom Boxing’s Face Off show. “I’m waiting for when the final bell goes and we’re questioning who won. I don’t think I’ve had that. Every time it has been by unanimous decision.

“He (Rodriguez) is a great fighter, but he hasn’t been in the ring with me yet. This is my biggest event. When there is something at stake it moves my emotional needle. I spend a lot of my time numb, there is not much in this life that really does anything for me these days.

“When I get in the ring and I already know I’m going to beat the kid then you get a softer version of me. I’m less switched on and animated. But give me something I can really get my teeth into, like Rodriguez, and this is a proper fight.

Sheffield, UK – June 1: Sunny Edwards training ahead of his upcoming fight next week in london defending his IBF World Flyweight Title.
1 June 2023
Picture By Mark Robinson Matchroom Boxing

“I’d be stupid to not take this man as a serious threat. Bam is very good at bringing his power throughout his fight, trying to make it count. Maybe I’m not as good at that but I’m very, very good at using what I do have to win the fight – keep him honest, keep him missing and not get too caught up in what they want me to do.

“I think I could knock him out, I genuinely do.

“If you (Rodriguez) get in the ring with me and let everyone else tell you ‘he don’t punch’ then I give you two or three rounds before there is a slight change in your behaviour, I promise you.”

Edwards has been a professional since 2017 and boxed 161 rounds with the heavier-handed 23-year-old Rodriguez completing 94.

The South Londoner reckons that extra experience could be telling.

“With the younger fighters you see them waiver a bit,” said Edwards. “You see their eyes move and the expression on their face. You are a bit more temperamental with everything going on around you.

“You spend a couple of rounds making the veteran miss and they are only thinking ‘I’m going to get you. I’m going to get you’. You spend a couple of rounds making a prospect, who has been punching peoples’ heads in, miss and all of a sudden their world is falling apart.”

September 21, 2023; Orlando, Florida; Eddie Hearn, Chairman of Matchroom Sport, speaks at the press conference announcing the December 16, 2023 unification bout between WBO flyweight champion Jesse Rodriguez and IBF flyweight champion Sunny Edwards . The bout will take place at the Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom.

Edwards is slick and his movement makes him a hard target to pin down. He believes he can still win a decision on away soil in that evasive fashion.

“For every millisecond that I spend holding my feet against an athlete who has dedicated his whole life to get to the same position to challenge me for these belts – that extra second and that extra bit of energy and power to throw one shot – it could get me knocked out, it could get me tired or it could make me lose,” said Edwards.

“I box in a certain rhythm and flow state. I’m not trying to hurt someone. There is not one part of me when I box that I want to knock someone out.

“I don’t need to hurt anybody. If I hit someone 15 times and they hit me once per round – clear as day – why do I need to hurt him?

“I can outbox anyone. I’m probably the best defence boxer in the world right now. I stay out of range, pick shots and frustrate you – slow the rhythm down.

“I’m very tough. I know I can get caught, get put down and get up. I’ve got the heart for it. These are the fights I want to be in. I chase greatness not fake, unbeaten records.”

London, UK – June 8: Sunny Edwards and Andres Campos Final Press Conference ahead of their IBF World Flyweight Title fight on saturday night.
8 June 2023
Picture By Mark Robinson Matchroom Boxing
Sunny Edwards before the press conference.

Edwards-Martinez will be live on DAZN.

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