By Ian S Palmer
After about 15 months out of the ring, southpaw Victor Ortiz of Garden city, Kansas will be taking on Saul Corral of Mexico in a 10-round welterweight fight at the Rabobank Theater in Bakersfield, California on Sunday, July 30th. The contest will be broadcast live on Fox Sports 1 and Fox Deportes in the U.S. Ortiz last fought in April of 2016 when he was stopped in the fourth round by Andre Berto in their rematch. Corral’s last outing was on June 16th when he stopped Ernesto Rivera in the second round.
The 30-year-old Ortiz enters the bout with a record of 31-6-2 along with 24 Kos and he’s gone 5-5 in his last 10 contests. Ortiz has been a bit of an enigma with wins against Emmanuel Clottey, Mike Arnaoutis, Antonio Diaz, Nate Campbell and Vivian Harris, but he’s been stopped by Floyd Mayweather, Josesito Lopez, Marcos Maidana, Luis Collazo and Berto and dropped a six-round disqualification to Corey Alarcon. He’s also fought draws with Marvin Cordova Jr. and Lamont Peterson.
Ortiz’s heart has sometimes been questioned and his chin definitely isn’t his strong point since he’s been stopped five times in his six losses. There’s no question that he’s an exciting fighter though. When Ortiz is determined and focused he’s a handful for any opponent and Berto found this out in their first slugfest in 2011 which Ortiz took by unanimous decision. Both boxers were decked twice each in that contest and it was one of the best fights of 2011. Fans are hoping to see more of that out of Ortiz.
Looking at the tale of the tape, Ortiz turned pro in 2004 and has 175 rounds under his belt. He’s 5-feet-9-inches tall and has a wingspan of 70 inches to give him both a slight height and reach disadvantage. Ortiz’s knockout ratio is currently 62 percent and he does have pretty good power. Ortiz is a former WBC Welterweight Champ as he took Berto’s title from him in their first fight. However, the then lost it to Mayweather by controversial KO.
The year-old Corral isn’t one of Mexico’s best-known boxers and he enters the contest with a record of 25-9 with 16 Kos. He turned pro in 2006 and has fought 162 rounds since then. He stands just over 5-feet-9-inches tall with a reach of 73.5 inches. Corral isn’t known for his power and has a current knockout ratio of 47 per cent. He’s lost to Josesito Lopez and Sadam Ali and has been stopped by Mike Alvarado and Dierry Jean for his only two stoppage defeats in his nine losses. Corral has good speed and some skills, but he’s failed to deliver whenever he’s stepped up in class.
If Ortiz is motivated and in the right frame of mind, then he can be a handful for just about anybody. But even if that’s the case, he’s still the owner of a relatively weak chin. He doesn’t want to hang around any longer than he has to, so should be looking to land some big shots on Corral early on. That might not be easy though due to ring rust. Ortiz should win this fight and if he doesn’t he may want to consider hanging up his gloves.