Alec Bazza [0-24(3)-2] fulfills a crucial role in the world of boxing.
The Belfast Spartan is a well-respected journeyman , taking on prospects up and down Britain week-in week-out.
Not only does he invariably last the distance, Bazza’s reputation is massively enhanced by the fact that he fights back, hard.
The Eastside fighter is in a war nearly every weekend. Often bloodied, regularly on the floor, Bazza always seems to find a way to make it through and keep throwing, giving numerous prospects scares and being unlucky on the cards more than a few times.
Winless in 26 contests, Bazza needs to taste victory soon though if he is to continue his job.
Instead of a mere eye-test which would prove he is a game and capable operator, the British Boxing Board of Control need Bazza to score a win or he is at risk that they will take away his licence when it is next up for review.
The Ulsterman is planning to get this win on Saturday night in Dublin.
Bazza is finally back in Ireland and fights Tallaght lightweight debutant Liam Gaynor over four rounds at the National Stadium on the Celtic Clash 2 bill.
The 28 year old explained to Irish-Boxing.com that “I have a child now, a baby to feed and look after, and if I don’t get that win my licence might be revoked and I’m at wit’s end.”
“A win to keep on doing what I’m doing on the circuit is vital.”
Bazza is a realist, and outlined how “I do believe boxing is a business whatever way people look at it.”
“Most people I fight have advantages most times – whether it be getting proper camps, competitive sparring, on-hand nutritionists, fight gear sponsors etc.”
“I get two weeks notice to fight at three different weights if I’m lucky!”
On Saturday Bazza will be the bigger man, with four weeks notice, and takes on a teenage upstart looking to “get the name out there” – it has the ingredients to be the Fight of the Night.
Claiming a fighter who has never won in 26 contests and a debutant could provide a Fight of the Night may cause some to scoff – indeed Bazza has received a few derisory remarks over the years.
However, in general, the Alio Wilton-trained fighter is generally well respected and it will be the same from the knowledgeable crowd that will flock to the National Stadium on Saturday.
He described how “I’ve seen a few things before. I know, this is expected, they [detractors] aren’t there at all my fights.”
“I don’t let it get to me, those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
“In all honesty, I get cheers and respect and am highly appreciated when I fight away. Everyone knows my place and I do too.”
Describing his style, Bazza is proud to say “I’m not a ‘lay down and quit’ journeyman and I know how shit it is to go and watch fights with people that don’t commit to crowd-pleasing in the slightest.”
“Frankly I’m here to bring people on a little bit, even if I ain’t good enough for titles etc. I can deal with that, but I want to be happy and enjoy it too while I’m in there. Otherwise what’s the point?”
“I fight with pride and fearlessness, with enjoyment and pain from life’s travels composed in punches, and a wee bit of character at a glance.”
Bazza is a talkative guy, always up for a chat, but when asked the big question – ‘Do you think you can get your first win on Saturday?’ – he has just one word.
The card on Saturday is headlined by Eric Donovan, with further support from Mike Perez, Jay Byrne, Gerard Whitehouse, Stephen Carroll, Sean Creagh, Rohan Date, Carl McDonald, Vladimir Belujsky, Allan Phelan, and Lynn Harvey, as well as debutants Regan Buckley, John Joyce, John Corcoran, and Stephen McAfee.
Tickets for Celtic Clash 2 are priced at €15 (Under 15s), €30, €40, €45, and €55 (Premium), and are available from the boxers involved.
Photo Credit: Ricardo Guglielminotti – The Fighting Irish (@ThefIrish)
Joe O’Neill and Gavan Casey speak to Jason Quigley on Episode 5 of The Irish Boxing Show: