The much-awaited IBF World Super Bantam fight between promising young boxer Cherneka Johnson and established legend Susie Ramadan will be one to watch. Taking place on Sunday the 16th of October at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Aussie fans are torn about who is going to emerge victorious. Will it be Johnson, who’s got the agility and endurance of youth on her side? Or will it be SusieQ, a fighter who’s fought through discrimination and proven the range of her many skills? Let’s find out more about both fighters:

Cherneka Johnson

 Australian professional boxer Cherneka ‘Neekz’ Lee Johnson, who was born in New Zealand, has held the IBF women’s junior-featherweight championship since April 2022. Johnson left New Zealand when she was 12 and relocated to Australia. She is from a Maori family that belongs to the. Johnson has a brother who recently passed, as well as a sister.

2019 was a very good year for Johnson as she defeated notable fighters with excellent records, like Nimnoi and Roslie. The pandemic prevented Johnson from fighting in 2020, but it paid off in training time. Johnson’s lone defeat to date was when she competed against Shannon O’Connell for the World Boxing Association’s Gold World Bantamweight championship. Although it was a tight battle, O’Connell won by the judge’s accounts. Johnson fought Melissa Esquivel of Mexico in 2022 for the International Boxing Federation’s World Super Bantamweight championship. Johnson won through a split decision, and thus became the second Maori person, third New Zealander woman, and fourth New Zealand-born person to win a significant World boxing championship.

Titles won by Jackson include:

  • World Boxing Association’s Oceania Bantamweight title
  • Women’s International Boxing Association’s World Bantamweight title
  • International Boxing Federation’s World Super Bantamweight title
Cherneka Johnson Stats & Info
Total fights 15
Wins 14
Knockout Victories 6
Losses 1
Losses 1
KO percentage 40%
Career debut 2016
Age 27
Stance Orthodox

Susie Ramadan

Sunduz, or ‘Susie’, Ramadan is a boxing champion from Australia. She held the World Boxing Council’s women’s bantamweight championship between 2012 to 2014 in addition to the International Boxing Federation’s women’s bantamweight belt in 2011. Ramadan was reared in Melbourne’s suburbs.  Her parents are Turkish and Albanian and she with Muslim heritage. Ramadan and her sister, Julia, attended an Australian high school where they were frequently attacked because they practiced Islam. Susie was a favorite target for bullies due to her diminutive size. One day, when she had reached her limit, she attacked her significantly bigger foe, putting them in their place. The bullying ceased once she showed she wasn’t someone to be messed with.

In terms of sports, Ramadan gave it his all. Soccer and dance were her first two passions. Before sustaining an injury to the knee in a game that ended her career, she advanced through the ranks. She took up boxing when her injuries had healed because of the discipline, conditioning, and strategy required by the sport. Ramadan did not find it to be too difficult because she had already tried her hand at kickboxing and had enjoyed it. As soon as Ramadan began working out in a local boxing facility, she became addicted.

On the recommendation of a boxing buddy, she visited the Brizzi Brothers Boxing Gym, which has been known to produce champions in the sport.  She met her coach, Ben Brizzi, there, and he would later help her win a world title. Today, SuzieQ as she prefers to be known is a well-known and loved figure in the Australian boxing world. She has won multiple local and international titles, and with a career spanning 15 years, she’s proven she’s here to stay.

Susie’s previous titles include:

  • International Boxing Association’s Female Super-Flyweight Title
  • World Boxing Council’s Female Bantamweight Title
  • World Boxing Council’s International Female Bantamweight Title
  • International Boxing Federation’s Female Bantamweight Title
  • World Boxing Federation’s Female Bantamweight Title
  • International Boxing Federation’s Female Super Bantamweight Title
  • World Boxing Federation’s Female Super-Bantamweight Title
  • Oriental and Pacific Boxing Federation’s Female Super-bantamweight Title
  • Australian Female Super Bantamweight Title
Susie Ramadan Stats & Info
Total fights 32
Wins 29
Knockout Victories 12
Losses 3
KO percentage 37.5%
Career debut 2007
Age 43
Stance Orthodox

The Fight

 After Johnson took on Mexican fighter Melissa Esquivel and won the International Boxing Federation’s World Super Bantamweight Championship, this April, she already has a contender for the crown in established fighter Susie Ramadan, who has held the title before.

For Johnson, this fight is an emotional one. This world title fight would have been the first that the 27-year-old’s brother Levi would have been able to attend. Tragically, Levi Johnson was killed in a violent stabbing incident in September outside a gym in Brisbane. Because of this, Johnson will dedicate the fight to her brother’s memory.

 Cherneka Johnson and Ramadan have previously been sparring mates, but this is the first time the two will meet as adversaries in the ring. Sunday’s title fight will be on the undercard of a rematch between Devin Haney and George Kambasos Jr.

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