After a lengthy delay, Lawrence ‘The Sauce’ Okolie finally gets a crack at a world title when he faces Poland’s Krzysztof Glowacki at the SSE Arena.
Hackney fighter Lawrence Okolie is in action on Saturday night when he finally gets his shot at a world title against Poland’s Krzysztof Glowacki.
The Sauce is odds-on to land the vacant WBO world cruiserweight title, while there are some stars of the future on show and the card promises to be entertaining.
All Systems Go After Delay
This fight was originally scheduled as the chief support on the Anthony Joshua-Kubrat Pulev undercard back in December, but unfortunately Glowacki had to pull out after catching Covid-19.
Thankfully all is now well and the pair step through the ropes to fight for the last remaining unclaimed belt left behind by undisputed cruiserweight king Oleksandr Usyk – who vacated all four of his titles when moving up to compete in the heavyweight division.
Okolie Open to Plenty of Improvement
Okolie’s back-story is a great advertisement for the sport of boxing having gone from working at a fast food chain to a professional boxer in a relatively short space of time.
Having been inspired by Anthony Joshua (who is Okolie’s manager and mentor) winning gold at the London 2012 Olympics, Okolie transformed his life and now rates as one of the top British fighters despite very little amateur experience.
Only 15 bouts into his professional career, Okolie has knocked out 12 opponents but has also been the victim of criticism from some quarters that he holds too much and makes for unappealing viewing.
However, he has teamed up with talented coach Shane McGuigan and was exciting and explosive in his last fight – which was only his third under McGuigan – when blowing away Nikodem Jezewski in just the second round last year.
This is a step up for Okolie, but the delay to this fight will have benefitted the team – enabling them to gel and improve.
Fireworks Expected in London
Undefeated Okolie is an awkward and rangey fighter, albeit he is still raw and learning, but more than anything else he possesses big power for a cruiserweight.
He does plan to eventually move up into the heavyweight division, but before doing so can make waves in the 200lbs division and gain his first world title here.
Former world champion Glowacki has been beaten twice, firstly on points by the hugely talented Usyk back in 2016 and more recently in his last fight against current IBF champion Mairis Briedis of Lativa in 2019.
The Pole was stopped in the third round during a dramatic and action-packed fight, the 34-year-old having been happy to trade big shots with Breidis only to come off second best.
It was a brutal stoppage and may have left a mark on Glowacki.
Okolie will respect his opponent early on as someone who has shared the ring with some of the best in this weight class. But the Hackney fighter can get to his man in the middle-to-late rounds and is fancied to get the stoppage win at
Okolie has needed the judges’ scorecards only three times so far in his career, it’s
13/5 for him to win via decision or technical decision.
Welshman Joe Cordina is one of the notable names on the undercard. The undefeated super featherweight is tipped to one day bag a world title and he is is a is a very strong favourite on his return to the ring for the first time since November 2019. He faces off against Belgium’s Faroukh Kourbanov, who will be making his UK debut, bringing with him a 17-2 record.
Liverpool’s Anthony Fowler can continue his decent run since defeat to Scott Fitzgerald two years ago with another comfortable win over Jorge Fortea, before Chris Billam-Smith is fancied to take down the WBA continental cruiserweight title in the chief support against Czech Vasil Ducar.
*All odds correct at time of writing