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Bali's Local Lord of the Rings

WBA Champ Chris Johns to Defend Title in Bali on May 22, 2010?

(2/22/2010) Bali-based World Boxing Association (WBA) champion, Chris Johns, is scheduled to defend his title in a fight in Bali on May 22, 2010, although who will challenge the "Champ" for his title remains a mystery.

Indonesian boxing promoter, Zaenal Thayeb, told DenPost that the matter of payment for the fights has nearly been sorted out, with approximately Rp. 1 billion (US$105,000) set aside for Chris and an amount of between Rp. 400-600 million (US$42,000 - 63,000) allocated for his still-to-be-named opponent.

Thayeb denied reports that American fighter Cornelius Lock is the man slated to fight Chris, labeling such reports as pure speculation and insisting the identity of the man to challenge Indonesia's world champion boxer is still unknown.

Thayeb is assuring the press that the fighter eventually chosen for the Bali fight will be from among the top ten fighters in the ranking of WBA welterweights.

Thayeb also promises a supporting card of six duels populated mostly by Indonesian pugilists.

When asked the entire cost of promoting the fight, Thayeb said he expects to spend between Rp. 6 - 7 billion (US$630,000-736,000). Apparently still scrambling to raise this amount, Thayeb revealed he is still seeking commercial backers as well as lobbying both the local and national government to help back the bout.