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A profile: Frank Buglioni WBA 160lb Challenger

By Erhan Bora: On Saturday 24th July, Frank Buglioni takes on newly crowned WBA super middleweight champion Fedor Chudinov at the SSE arena in London. Like myself the fighter hails from a North London town called Enfield, and shares a lot of local support, but it largely unknown to the national and global audiences, especially the casuals.

With Britain having many challengers in the division such as George Groves, Rocky Fielding, Martin Murray and Callum Smith as well as an IBF champion in the shape of James DeGale, question marks remain over why Buglioni has jumped the queue on the back of a draw against little known regional fighter Lee Markham.

Firstly the fighter is managed and promoted by Queensbury promotions and Boxnation, and thus, has links to Hrunov aka Chudinov’s manager which facilitated his participation in Fedor’s first voluntary defence. Importantly, it is key to note that Buglioni was ranked as high as #5 with another governing body the WBO and has a good boxing skill-set. Albeit, walking onto a few of Sergey Khomisky’s hayemakers and getting stopped, Frank has provided some stellar performances which was enough to impress legendary super middleweight Steve Collins to take him under his wing at the Celtic warriors gym. After the Khomitsky lost, Buglioni left old trainer Tibbs who has Billy Joe Saunders in the stable, and has improved in his footwork and head movement. Buglioni is the type of fighter who can punch and move as well as stand and trade, which was evident against Markham and Andrew Robinson. He is yet to face a top level fighter, so in this fight it is vital he punches and move as he has the ability to score well and is a lot more mobile than others at his weight. His place in this fight has been questioned by many in the sport, such as online journalists but he does have a strong following in his team Buglioni who create a fan-ship with minor Hatton-esque familiarities.

His opponent Fedor Chudinov has even less professional experience than him, although he has a strong amateur perigee but you could draw parallels to the Orlando Salido and Lomachenko fight, all be it Salido was more experienced than what Buglioni is. The parallel I’m alluding to is that if Buglioni can use his professional skill-set and hit and move and not stand and trade then he can easily draw points away from Chudinov, especially in a home arena which will have many of his fans inside.

Buglioni has a superb chin, even when he was rocked by hard-hitting Khomitsky, he was on his feet and he can take a punch but has a tendency to stand and trade hooks and uppercuts. He is of a similar mold to Arturo Gatti, all be it a bit heavier and a bit more of a slugger but he has stablemates such as Middleweight Gary O’sullivan who has a similar style to Fedor Chudinov who can effectively help in prepare in the best way.

Compared to Andre Ward and the likes his resume does not stand up but Frank Buglioni can set himself up here by winning, and it is now or never for him in a really competitive division, domestically and on a global scene. If he sticks to his boxing, he can score points over a fighter who will aim to walk him down and slug it out. If ever there was a ‘easy’ title shot, which there isn’t, then this is the best shot any fighter has in a strong division. Best of luck to you Frank.

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