Gabriel Maestre has waited nearly a decade for his rematch with Eimantas Stanionis.

The fighters are set to finally meet again, nearly 10 years after their previous matchup – and this time the stakes are much higher. Maestre will face Stanionis in a welterweight world title fight on the undercard of the Saul Alvarez-Jaime Munguia headliner on May 4 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Maestre and Staniosis previously fought as amateurs in 2015 in Qatar. Stanionis won that fight, but Maestre has always hoped to get his revenge.

“This is the fight that I’ve wanted for a long time, and now things have come full circle,” Maestre said during a recent virtual press conference. “We had a very tough close fight in the amateurs, and I’m looking forward to seeing what he has now.”

Maestre, a Venezuelan, thought he might cross paths with Lithuania’s Stanionis when each fought for his country in the 2016 Olympics, but the matchup never materialized.

“We didn’t get a chance to fight each other at the Rio Olympics,” Maestre said. “So I’m truly looking forward to the opportunity to fight him in the pros.”

As a pro, Maestre (6-0-1, 5 KOs) has turned in several lackluster performances, including when he needed to climb off the floor to win a controversial decision over Mykal Fox in 2021 and a draw with Taras Shelestyuk in 2022. 

But Maestre has since stopped former two-division titleholder Devon Alexander and then, most recently facing Travon Marshall, stopped the young prospect in the second round of their Showtime Championship Boxing bout last August to regain some career momentum.

At 37, Maestre is significantly older than the 29-year-old Stanionis (14-0, 9 KOs), but the elder opponent has looked to a countryman, 40-year-old Ismael Barroso, for inspiration. Barroso knocked out Ohara Davies in one round in January, despite being the betting underdog.

“I’m not worried about the age difference,” Maestre said. “Look what my fellow Venezuelan  Ismael Barroso did and what I did in my last fight. We’re going to keep pushing forward.”

Lucas Ketelle is a proud member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and author of ‘Inside The Ropes of Boxing’ (available on Amazon). Contact him on X @LukieBoxing

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