The Monday LunchBox

Light-heavyweight Joshua Buatsi shows off his strap.

Croydon’s light-heavyweight Joshua Buatsi put in an excellent performance in brutally dispatching undefeated Daniel Blenda Dos Santos in Manchester on Saturday after 2:44 of the fourth round.

The shot that finished the contest was a powerful arching right hand straight to the Frenchman’s chin as he backed into a corner. Dos Santos was KO’d immediately from the impact of the blow and fell face first onto the canvas, lying motionless for a few worrying minutes. After receiving medical assistance and temporarily recovering Dos Santos spent his remaining ring time in a flood of tears after the enormity of the knockout and disappointment struck him. The victor showed immense compassion to his opponent throughout.

The technically gifted and heavy handed Buatsi dominated the first three completed rounds as Dos Santos appeared gun shy and continually struggled with his balance. It would’ve been easy to say that he was petrified as the scale of the task and Buatsi’s skill set became evident. However, he managed to navigate himself through the first three rounds but the eventual victor seemed inevitable. The right hand of the champion sealed the deal.

Buatsi (14-0, 12 KO’s), with new trainer Virgil Hunter in his corner, exhibited some of his new skills and ring confidence. The knockout blow followed a tap to the body of the Frenchman and the Englishman’s body work was a feature throughout, set up by powerful jabs and a strong right hand. Buatsi retained his WBA International light-heavyweight title and is now highly ranked by all four governing bodies.

Asked in the post fight interview of what he took away from his night’s work, he replied “I take away, I figured out someone on the job, I learnt on the job”. He continued “I showed I was going to the body” and explaining the stoppage, then “No body next time and went to the head” in reference to his KO shot.

Hunter was also interviewed and confirmed he was “most definitely happy” and predicted Buatsi would be a champion inside two years.

Dos Santos suffered his first defeat and drops to 15-1, 8 KO’s.

The 175lb (12st,7lb) division is one of the strongest in boxing both domestically and internationally. Buatsi is targeting Russian Artur Beterbiev as holder of two of the sanctioning belts (IBF & WBC), but fellow Russian Dmitry Bivol (WBA) and American Joe Smith Jr (WBO) would be on paper easier matches as the Englishman with Ghanaian heritage seeks to gain a world title.

On this showing Buatsi would be given a good chance against any of the champions but the key is to keep him active. Matchroom Chairman Eddie Hearn is seeking to match him again on July 17 or 24th in a stiffer test.

Other main news of the weekend was the social media appearance of Tyson Fury “officially announcing” the Anthony Joshua fight in Saudi Arabia on 14th August. The ‘Gypsy King’ has kept his powder dry over the last week whilst Eddie Hearn has been reassuring the media and fans of an agreement and fight date. Now the other side has spoken, we would appear to be inching closer to a deal.

Big fight this coming weekend is the junior-welterweight (140lbs/ 10st) world unification between Scotland’s Josh Taylor and Mexican-American Jose Ramirez in Las Vegas. Look for further updates through the week.

This weekly feature is to also raise awareness of the Ringside Charitable Trust.

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