(DEC 21) WBAN has received
a press release in regards to Holly Holm accepting a public
challenge by Cecelia Braekhus. The release stated the
following: "Negotiations are about to begin for arguably
the most anticipated match-up in women's professional boxing
history between 14-time, three-division world champion Holly
"The Preacher's Daughter" Holm (32-2-3, 9 KOs) and undefeated
Cecilia "First Lady" Braekhus (21-0, 5 KOs), considered by most
to be the top two female pound-for-pound boxers in the world,
for July in Las Vegas."
Braekhus issued a challenge by way of a
video tape shown after Holm's recent victory
against Diana Prazak at Route 66 Casino Hotel in Albuquerque.
After introducing herself as the World Boxing Council, World
Boxing Association and World Boxing organization welterweight
champion, Braekhus said the following, directed to Holm: "I have
an important message for you. Your promoter (Lenny Fresquez) has
been saying that this fight (vs. Anne Sophie Mathis) confirms
that Holly is the No. 1 female fighter in the world. I do
understand that you are avoiding me, but listen carefully: next
July I will be in Las Vegas. You will meet me there? Let's find
out who is the best female fighter in the world."
The Colombian-born, Norway-residing Braekhus has fought only
once outside of Europe (WDEC6 vs, Nicole Woods) as a
professional, in 2008 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel in
Hollywood, Florida. Thirty-four of Holm's 37 home fights have
been in her hometown, Albuquerque, where she regularly sells-out
with crowds in excess of 3,000.
"I'd love to fight her to make that happen," Holm proclaimed as
she accepted Braekhus' challenge. "Lenny (Fresquez) will talk to
them. I appreciate her wanting to make the fight, as well;
that's the only way we can get a good fight. Two fighters
mutually agreeing to fight is what it comes down to. I'm honored
that she has challenged me.
"I would never make a video of myself to send to someone. That's
not my style. I'm open to fighting her, really, wherever. I've
always been open to fighting, wherever, and I think there's a
big misconception that, oh, I only fight here. I fight here
(Albuquerque) because the opportunities have been here, and
that's the bottom line. If there's an opportunity that it's
going to be in Las Vegas, then, by all means, let's make it
Holm and Braekhus, combined, are 33-1-1 in world title fights,
as well as 19-1-1 in fights against other world champions (Holm
is 22-1-1 and 14-1-1, respectively, Braekhus 11-0 and 5-0). Holm
has an overwhelming advantage in experience fighting quality
opponents, having defeated a Who's Who of women boxers, from the
light welterweight through light middleweight divisions,
including Christy Martin, Jane Couch, Mary Jo Sanders, Chevelle
Hallback and Terri Blair twice apiece, Duda Yankovich, Myriam
Lamare, and Mia St. John. Braekhus, who has also defeated
Hallback, is coming off a 10-round decision over Mathis, whom
Holm split two fights with in the past year. An amazing 212 of
Holm's 275 pro rounds fought have been in world championships;
Braekhus has 100 of 154.
Fresquez hopes that Braekhus and her promoter, Sauerland Boxing,
are serious about coming to Las Vegas and fighting Holm. "I've
been negotiating with them for two years and they've avoided
Holly," Fresquez reported. "I sent Katie Sauerland, I think
that's her name, an email but have not gotten a response back. I
understand why - Holly is the pound-for-pound champion of the
world. Cecilia carries a lot of belts but most are those that
Holly vacated. Cecilia is kind of carrying Holly's leftovers.
"I know who the best fighter is, the reigning Queen of Boxing,
Holly Holm! It's Cecilia's job to fight Holly and try to take
her crown away by beating her. We know that she's in the top
five, pound-for-pound, but Holly is the best. You have to beat
the best to be the best."
The great Lucia Rijker, who trained Prazak for her fight with
Holm, added, "That (Holm vs. Braekhus) would be a phenomenal
Women's mega-fights are difficult to pull off for a wide variety
of reasons. Two perfect examples of mega-fights that failed to
materialize are Laila Ali vs. Ann Wolfe and Rijker vs. Martin.