Promising fighter Joshua Buatsi returns to action on October 4 when he puts his WBA International light heavyweight title on the line against Croatian Marko Calic. Can Buatsi put in a perfromance that gets him noticed?
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Road to Joshua Buatsi v Marko Calic
By the time Joshua Buatsi climbs into the ring on October 4, it will have been over 13 months since he has thrown a real punch in anger. Yes, he will have been sparring but it’s just not the same as being in the ring with a genuine opponent. A lot of people are expecting big things from Buatsi in the near future. The bronze medal winner from the 2016 Rio Olympics has yet to lose a professional bout, he has won all 12 fights since turning professional in 2017 and has won 10 of them by way of knockout. He won the vacant WBA International light heavyweight title in only his seventh fight when he stopped Andrejs Pokumeiko in the first round. Since then he has had five title defences, and he even won the WBA British light heavyweight title with a third-round TKO over Liam Conroy – he has since relinquished that belt. His last bout was in August 2019 when he successfully defended his WBA International belt with a knockout win in then seventh round against Ryan Ford from Canada at The O2 Arena in London. His opponent on October 4 will be Marko Calic from Croatia. Calic is also unbeaten, having won 11 fights with six of them coming by way of stoppage. The 33-year-old may be unbeaten, and was a big hit in the amateurs, but he has not been in the ring with anyone who can punch as fast as Buatsi. Calic was last in the ring in October 2019, when he was awarded a unanimous decision against Serhii Zhuk.
Joshua Buatsi v Marko Calic Predictions & Tips
Buatsi wants to be known as one of the best light heavyweight fighters in the world, at the moment he just has to keep knocking down every obstacle in front of him until the big fights fall into his lap. He will most definitely have the likes of Artur Beterbiev, Dmitry Bivol and Jean Pascal in his sights, but first he has to get past Calic. We all know this is just a tune up fight for Buatsi to get him in shape in order to be ready once the big offers start to come in. As already mentioned, Buatsi has knocked out 10 of his 12 opponents since the Olympics, unfortunately for Calic, I am backing him to be the Croyden fighter’s 11th knockout victim. Buatsi will use the opening round to get the feel of his opponent before letting his fists fly and he will get the Croatian out of there in under six minutes.
Joshua Buatsi v Marko Calic: Fighter Predictions
Joshua Buatsi: “I’m excited to have a fight date confirmed. I haven’t boxed in over a year, so this has been a long time coming. I’m looking forward to going through the whole process of arriving at the venue, warming up, walking out and performing under those bright lights again. It has been very difficult adjusting my training whilst waiting for a fight date. It’s the first time it has happened to me as a professional to this extent, so it’s been an interesting period, but you just have to get on with it. Marko Calic is a solid opponent who will be coming to win. He’s very experienced in the amateur scene and was around on the circuit years before me. As always, I’m planning on impressing with my performance. Winning is everything. I want to get two fights in this year, starting with a win against Calic.”
Marko Calic: “I have known Joshua Buatsi since my days in the amateurs. I have followed his professional career since he switched from the amateurs after the Rio Olympic Games in 2016. He is a strong fighter and has a good boxing IQ. He is a good technician, but I also believe in my boxing ability and I will be ready on October 4. As an amateur, I was fighting at 91kg in the heavyweight category, so our paths never crossed in the ring. When I was in the European Championships in Samokov in 2015, I think he won a bronze medal, so yes I know him pretty well. I’ve watched him progress in the professional ranks and he is a good fighter, so I will be well prepared. Beating Buatsi would be huge for my career. It would make me well known in the boxing community and open a lot of doors for me. Eddie Hearn is the best boxing promoter in the world right now and his events get a lot of attention. I will prove myself on the big stage. This win will mean a lot for me. I expect that Buatsi will come forward and take the fight to me. I will try to counterpunch him, but I will also be ready to fight fire with fire. My main focus is to do my best. One of my main strengths is that I am taller than most of my opponents. I am also a very good technical boxer with a high boxing IQ.”