One half of Australian boxing’s golden fraternal duo, Andrew Moloney, is back on home soil for the first time in two years as he hunts a return to winning ways.
Moloney on Tuesday headlines the first night of a brilliant boxing double-header, before Paul Gallen faces Darcy Lussick in Wednesday night’s rugby-league-themed showcase.
The 30-year-old former WBA “World” junior bantamweight (also known as super flyweight) champion will take on Philippines’ Froilan Saludar at The Star in Sydney as he attempts to get his world title dreams back on track after a brutal three-fight rut.
Meanwhile, exiled former NRL player Tim Simona makes his professional debut as he seeks a path to rugby league redemption.
Watch live on Fox Sports 507 from 7pm AEDT, steam on Kayo, and follow the action in our live blog below!
In November 2019, Moloney knocked out Elton Dharry in Melbourne in the eighth round of their WBA interim title fight. Three months later, he would be upgraded to WBA’s ‘World’ junior bantamweight champion when Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez was promoted to the sanctioning body’s “Super” champion.
The Australian flew to the USA in early 2020 with a massive world title fight against the great Gonzalez in his sights – only for his title dream to fall apart in three-straight fights with fellow 115-pound contender Joshua Franco.
Moloney lost a tight unanimous decision to the American in June 2020, before their November rematch ended in a controversial No-Decision after Franco copped an eye injury that was ruled as coming from an accidental headbutt.
In August of this year, Moloney again fell short against the same opponent in a more comprehensive unanimous decision defeat. Those two defeats – and one no-contest – are the only stain on a perfect 20-fight unbeaten record.
Now the 30-year-old Aussie is back on home soil and chasing his first win in two years, hoping to put himself back in the world title picture and end a three-fight slump.
Moloney weighed right at the 115-pound limit, while 32-year-old former world title challenger Froilan Saludar (32-4-1, 22KOs) checked in at 114.5 pounds for his third road bout of his last four fights.
The two will battle over ten rounds for the vacant WBO Oriental Super Flyweight title.
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Tim Simona, booted from the NRL in 2017 for betting on matches, is hoping his entrance to the boxing ring can prove he’s turned his life around – and he’s still fit enough for a second chance in rugby league.
Simona was exiled from the game in disgrace after battling a gambling and cocaine addiction that even saw him steal from a club charity fundraiser to fund his addictions.
But the 79-game former Tigers flyer believes he has paid his penance and is now targeting a shock lifeline, with his manager reportedly reaching out to several NRL clubs.
Simona is coming off the back of a season with Manly feeder club Blacktown, after spending the 2020 campaign with Eastwood in suburban rugby.
“My heart has always been with footy and to get back to NRL, that’s the dream,” he told The Daily Telegraph on Monday.
“I’ve served my punishment and learned from my mistakes”, he added.
He debuts at cruiserweight against Aaron Cocco on Tuesday night.
Watch Paul Gallen vs Darcy Lussick LIVE on Main Event available on Foxtel & Kayo, Wednesday 22nd December from 7pm AEDT. ORDER NOW >
Light heavyweight veteran Renold Quinlan (13-8, 8 KOs), takes on hot prospect Faris Chevalier (12-1, 7 KOs) for the WBA regional belt.
Southpaw heavyweight Jackson Murray (2-0, 2 KOs) looks to make it three straight first-round KOs when he fights David Tuliloa (2-3, 2 KO’s).
And junior lightweight Manuer Matet (3-1, 2 KOs) seeks to stretch his winning streak to three as he battles Jye Lane Taylor (3-1, 1 KO).
Follow the action in our live blog below. If you can’t see the blog, click here.
Tale of the Tape
Born: January 10, 1991
Height: 5ft 5 ins
Weight: 115lbs / 52.14kg
Reach: 65 ins
Total Fights: 24
Record: 24-2-0-1 (14KOs)
Height: 5ft 5 ins
Weight: 114.5lb / 51.96kg
Reach: 67 ins
Total Fights: 37
Record: 32-4-1 (22KOs)
Froilan Saludar v Andrew Moloney (WBO Oriental Super Flyweight Title, 10 x 3 minute rounds)
Renold Quinlan v Faris Chevalier (WBA Oceania Light Heavyweight Title, 10 x 3 minute rounds)
David Tuliloa v Jackson Murray (Heavyweight, 6 x 3 minute rounds)
Manuer Matet v Jye Lane Taylor (Super Featherweight, 6 x 3 minute rounds)
Aaron Cocco v Tim Simona (Cruiserweight, 4 x 3 minute rounds)
Daniel Hardwood v Caleb Sims (Super Bantamweight, 4 x 3 minute rounds)