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Astrolabio battles Russian puncher

Vincent Astrolabio meets Nikolai Potapov of Russia in a 12-round International Boxing Federation bantamweight title eliminator Saturday night (Sunday morning in Manila) at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.

This will be Astrolabio’s first fight since pulling off a shocking victory over the decorated Cuban Guillermo Rigondeaux in Dubai early this year.

A win by Astrolabio, a native of General Santos City, will catapult him to a crack at the 118-lb crown in the event Japanese Naoya Inoue decides to vacate the throne to campaign as super-bantamweight.

To get ready for the New York-based Potapov, who packs a 23-2-1 record with 11 knockouts, Astrolabio set up camp in Las Vegas after training in the Philippines under Nonoy Neri.

In the United States, Astrolabio underwent a strict strength and conditioning program with renowned fitness coach Memo Heredia presiding.

Astrolabio, holder of a 17-3 mark with 12 knockouts, will be making his American debut.

Fighting under MP Promotions, Astrolabio is one of the many talented Filipino punchers being groomed for bigger things in 2023.

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