In a night filled with good fighters, the Anthony Joshua v Kubrat Pulev undercard throws up a heavyweight war between Martin Bakole and Sergey Kuzmin for the vacant WBC International Heavyweight title.
Bakole (15-1) takes on the Russian Kuzmin who also boasts a 15-1 winning record with one less registered knockout than his opponent making both fighters extremely similar fighters on paper.
The similarities continue as both of their only losses have come to the American Michael Hunter with Bakole being stopped late whilst Kuzmin got dropped once and lost convincingly on points.
Both are looking to prove themselves again here as victory is vital for both at this stage of their careers, however, both know a defeat will be a big setback; may the best man win.
Bakole's Chance to Shine
At 27 years old, the Democratic Republic of Congo fighter is primed to move up the gears and up the world rankings starting with Saturday night's fight against Kuzmin.
Despite not being ranked in the top 15 of any of the world title belts, he is still up and coming and has biding his time learning and waiting for his time.
Recently, he was tipped by Joshua and by trainer Peter Fury to become a heavyweight world champion in the future and a statement win in this fight will do him no harm in his heavyweight journey.
A win here would give the winner a world ranking in the WBC, something neither fighter has, which gives both fighters that extra motivation to come through with a win.
His big wins have come against Kevin Johnson and Wach as he stopped both of them who are famously durable fighters. The win against Johnson made me one of only three fighters to stop the American fighter.
Also, his win against Wach came at only three weeks' notice and he managed to stop the giant quicker than anyone else has managed. There is clearly a talented fighter here and Saturday stands as a chance to throw his name in the hat for a big 2021.
What Can Kuzmin Offer?
SERGEY'S STEEL CHIN🔩🗿— Sky Sports Boxing (@SkySportsBoxing) December 8, 2020
Sergey Kuzmin is happy to trade with anyone... has @MartinBakole17 got the power to stop him in his tracks?💫
📺Book #JoshuaPulev here: https://t.co/JQzgnxeVJr pic.twitter.com/ery6XYwINJ
In six years, Kuzmin has amassed a fairly decent set of fights on his CV, but his 17th fight will be his most important so far.
His sole loss came to Hunter in September last year, as he struggled with the speed and boxing skill of the American losing comfortably on points.
This fight will be less of a boxing match and more of a physical altercation as both will be looking to hurt one another rather than box their way to victory.
Every opponent he's faced has had a winning record and he's a very tough customer who will pose a very tough test for Bakole. His best win on paper would have to be the David Price fight, where the Brit retired on his stool following a bicep injury. Other than that win, his career hasn't really taken off.
He is currently ranked 13th in the WBA rankings, whilst Bakole is unranked, but he does still lack any quality names on his CV to boast about.
This fight stands as a chance to make a name for himself, fighting in England on a big card against a very good up and coming opponent to make a name for himself. He comes in as the underdog but he will come to fight and that will make for an exciting fight all round.