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Ben Whittaker: Boxing’s rising light-heavyweight star on showboating, coaching for the highest and successful by KO | Boxing Information

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Ben Whittaker obtained the world speaking with a singular efficiency in opposition to Khalid Graidia on the Joshua Buatsi vs Dan Azeez undercard on Saturday night time.

Who’s Ben Whittaker?

The 26-year-old is a rising star within the light-heavyweight division. He has an unbeaten 6-0 skilled file, with 5 of these victories coming by knockout.

He was a extremely profitable beginner boxer, who gained a silver medal on the Tokyo Olympic Video games in 2021, solely shedding to excellent Cuban Arlen Lopez within the ultimate.

Who trains him?

When he turned skilled Whittaker joined American coach SugarHill Steward, the nephew of legendary coach Manny Steward.

Steward has a secure of excessive profile fighters, notably WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury.

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Whittaker additionally works with Joby Clayton, who was his coach as an beginner.

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Ben Whittaker handled the Wembley crowd to extra of his get together methods throughout his dominant victory over Khalid Graidia.

Why is everybody speaking about him?

Whittaker impressed in his Olympic Video games and has dazzled in his skilled performances, combining outrageous showboating with stunningly highly effective mixture punching.

That model was in full impact final Saturday as he stopped Khalid Graidia, with a clip of Whittaker’s flamboyant showboating going viral on social media.

The eye has been international. As an illustration American star Shakur Stevenson, the WBO light-weight world champion, messaged Whittaker on social media saying: “I am a fan champ, I like how a lot enjoyable you may have whereas doing all of your craft.

“Inform them if they do not prefer it, step up the competitors so you may do this to them too.”

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Ben Whittaker combined his showboating abilities with devastating combos as he floored Khalid Gradia with a physique shot earlier than forcing a fifth spherical stoppage.

What does he say?

Whittaker advised Sky Sports activities Information: “The model that I do is definitely simply my model. I am not attempting to go viral, I am not attempting to get likes and issues like that. In fact it is a praise however I am simply being me. It is a good response however I’ve simply obtained to maintain level-headed, maintain my toes on the bottom and ensure I reduce no corners.

“I am simply attempting to be myself. You solely get one profession so I am simply attempting to have enjoyable whereas I am doing it. Everyone’s obtained their very own opinion and I am excited to see the place it goes.

“After I do really field and swap on I do imagine there’s not many individuals that may field like me. I’ve obtained a extremely good boxing IQ. Typically I do get a bit carried away. I perhaps had a bit too many Smarties within the altering room. However like I mentioned it is simply me having fun with myself, having enjoyable. I simply can’t wait to point out after I’m on the prime degree my precise actual abilities.

Ben Whittaker – Quick information

  • Age: 26
  • Division: Mild-heavyweight
  • Professional file: 6-0 (5)
  • Nickname: ‘The Surgeon’
  • Subsequent combat: TBC

“After I was a younger boy watching skilled boxing, that is what obtained me into it – the entire event, the ringwalk, what equipment would they arrive out in and issues like that.

“I principally generally take into consideration the equipment and the ringwalk, sadly, after which I let the workforce include the ways.

“On the finish of the day these followers are paying their hard-earned cash, they’re popping out to see a present and that is what we have got to do and placed on.”

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Ben Whittaker tried a showboat too far in opposition to Khalid Graidia as a 360 diploma spin earnt him a telling off from the referee.

When will he combat subsequent?

Whittaker doesn’t have a subsequent opponent or combat date confirmed but, however he’s anticipated to field once more in March.

After recovering from harm in 2023, Whittaker is seeking to be lively this 12 months too.

“My palms really feel good, no accidents no niggles,” he mentioned, “hopefully a quick turnover.”

When will he combat for a title?

Whittaker is a prospect and, at this early of his profession, is gathering expertise. However he has the expertise to maneuver faster than most.

His final opponent, Khalid Graidia as an example had gone the eight-round distance with former British and European champion Dan Azeez amongst others.

“He was presupposed to be an honest check for me. However I believe it simply exhibits the extent I am at,” Whittaker mentioned.

However he added: “It is all about expertise on this professional sport. You see a variety of prospects generally soar the gun too early after which they do not do the in between ranges.

“I wish to undergo each degree so when I’m on the prime I keep there and I believe that is what the secret is.”

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