FEUDING super-featherweight southpaws Tevin Farmer and Joseph Diaz are set to carry their grudge into the ring on the Demetrius Andrade-Luke Keeler bill. The contest marks Farmer’s fifth defence of his IBF belt, which he procured in August 2018 with a wide unanimous points success on away turf in Australia against faded former IBF feather champ Billy Dib.

Following a short amateur career, Farmer was forced to learn on the job as a pro, which explains why he went 7-4-1 in his opening dozen bouts. Since this sketchy introduction to the paid ranks, he has improved markedly, as evidenced by the fact that he has won his last 23 matches in a row (discounting one No Contest). Most recently in July, the 29-year-old Philadelphian unanimously outscored veteran ex-European titlist Guillaume Frenois. Diaz, 27, meanwhile, had a tougher-than-expected night last time out in September against Jesus Cuadro, whom he got past on a majority vote, despite injuring his left hand.

A 2012 Olympian, Diaz, 30-1 (15), has challenged for world honours once before. That was down at featherweight in May 2018 when he dropped a unanimous decision to talented WBC boss Gary Russell Jnr. The man from Downey, California has won three out of three since moving up to super-feather. Active and lively when firing off flurries, he works the body effectively and has quick feet. However, he can neglect his useful jab at times.

Farmer, 30-4-1 (6) 1NC, has developed into one of the sport’s slickest and most elusive boxers in the last year-and-a-half, during which time he has contested five world title fights. What he lacks in power he makes up for in accuracy and punch-picking prowess. Diaz will certainly make things competitive, but expect Farmer’s eye-catching counter hooks and uppercuts to lead him to victory on the cards.