By Sam Beresford
Matchroom Boxing and Sky Sports return this weekend, after a month lay-off, with the return of Joshua Buatsi. This card will take place on Sunday in Milton Keynes, suggesting a potential new time slot for prime-time boxing should the viewing figures be successful. Buatsi will be defending his WBA International light-heavyweight title against Croatian Marko Calic. The 33-year-old is also undefeated with a record of 11-0 with six stoppages. Calic is a smart fighter and has been given the chance to prove himself on a big stage. This will be Buatsi’s last chance to really impress before making the step up to world championship boxing, whilst a fight with Anthony Yarde also looms.
This will be Buatsi’s first fight since August 2019, when he defeated Canadian Ryan Ford with a seventh-round stoppage. It will be interesting to see how a substantial time out the ring affects a young fighter such as Buatsi, especially having been so active previously. Although it must also be noted that Calic has also spent a long time out, having not fought since October of 2019.
Buatsi doesn’t see the time out the ring as an issue, telling DAZN: “There is always something positive to take out of these situations. My body has rested when it needed to. There’s less battering, the grind against your body. I’ve stayed in the gym for as long as I can. I’m healthy, I’m fit. I’m strong, I’m good to go. It will be a bit awkward getting back into it, but once I’m in there with someone looking to take my head off, it’s time to fight. I still have to protect myself, and defend myself. I have to get to them before they get to you. That’s my mentality.”
Chantelle Cameron will be fighting for her first world title this weekend as she takes on Brazilian fighter, Adrianna Dos Santos Araujo for the vacant WBC super-lightweight title. Cameron has been looking for a fight with Katie Taylor and is currently the mandator for her lightweight belt.
However, the undefeated fighter has also managed to become mandatory for the super-lightweight title, of which she will be fighting for it this Sunday.
She told Sky Sports: "Everybody wants to fight Katie Taylor, and I would have been hanging around waiting for her. I'm 29 now and I want my own world titles. It's a short career so I don't want to be wasting my time, especially with everything that has happened this year.
Also on the card is fellow Croatian Alen ‘The Savage’ Babic, after his impressive victory during ‘Fight Camp’ against Shawndell Winters. Promoter Eddie Hearn has been raving about the heavyweight, stating that he is one of the most entertaining prospects in boxing. He also fought headliner Cralic as an amateur, telling his promoter just how dangerous he can be. Babic will be facing the more experienced Niall Kennedy, with many touting this fight as a potential upset.
Linus Udofia also defends his English middleweight title against John Harding Jr. Udofia won the title last November with a unanimous victory over Tyler Denning. This is a chance for both fighters to show their level and the victor will get the chance to advance onto the European level.