We analyse the credentials and statistics of Franck Petitjean and Adam Azim as the pair get set to headline BOXXER's latest fight card this weekend with the European super-lightweight title on the line.
Is Adam Azim British boxing’s next big thing? Boxxer and Sky Sports certainly seem to think so.
In just his 10th professional bout, ‘The Assassin’ (1/14) challenges Franck Petitjean () for the European super-lightweight title.
If the 21-year-old is successful, he will have captured the blue belt in fewer fights than any other British boxer in history.
Azim’s combination of lightning-fast hands and knockout power have helped establish him as one of the best prospects on these shores. However, the experienced Frenchman represents a significant step up in class.
Will Azim further enhance his status as a future world champion, or will the underdog upset the odds?
Let’s have a look at the tale of the tape…
|Franck Petitjean||Adam Azim|
|Height:||5ft 7ins||5ft 10ins|
|Trainer:||Youssef Barit||Shane McGuigan|
|Record:||24-6-3 (6 KO's)||9-0 (6 KO's)|
|Last Fight:||Won - (MD) v Samuel Molina (June2023)||Won - (UD) v Aram Fanyan (September 2023)|
Franck Petitjean made an inauspicious start to his professional career, drawing with, the unheralded, Yves Mesny. Two low profile wins followed before the Frenchman lost his fourth fight.
That was back in 2011 and few would have predicted that 13 years later, Petitjean would hold the European title. However, in the intervening years, he has honed craft and developed into a solid fighter.
Despite his improvement, Petitjean is still perceived as the weakest of the current European champions. Dalton Smith and Harlem Eubank had both been linked with a crack at the Frenchman, but it is Adam Azim who has won the race to challenge for the belt.
What Petjean lacks in technical ability he makes up for in experience and determination. Having overcome early set-backs, he went on win the French national title and in 2012 competed in the World Series of Boxing.
Petitjean has faced a number of opponents who previously fought in Britain. He holds a good win over Andrea Scarpa (best known for losing to Ohara Davies) and lost to Mohamed Mimoune, who defeated Sam Eggington.
The Frenchman stepped up to European level when he took on Enock Poulsen for the vacant title, last year. The Dane was victorious by the slimmest of margins, but a refereeing error resulted in Petitjean’s camp petitioning the EBU, who granted a rematch.
A deal was unable to be struck between the parties and the sanctioning body agreed to let the Frenchman fight for the vacant title on the proviso that Poulsen would challenge the winner in the future.
Petitjean’s second tilt at glory came against Samuel Molina. This time, the 35-year-old did just enough to prevail in an entertaining scrap.
Azim may be the more gifted of the two boxers, but Petitjean is in the form of his life. The Frenchman will not relinquish his title without a fight.
|Lateral movement||Head falls over the lead foot|
|Work rate||Susceptible to uppercuts|
|Applies Pressure||Stays in range too long after throwing his punches|
|Durability||Open to counters|
Over the past two years, Adam Azim has emerged as one of the most promising young boxers in Britain.
Naturally, pundits have made him the latest fighter to receive the label of “The new Naseem Hamed.”
Of course, such comparisons are inaccurate – there will never be another fighter quite like ‘The Prince.’ However, Azim is flashy, fast, powerful and possess all the qualities necessary to forge a legacy of his own.
‘The Assassin’ has learned his trade under the tutelage of Shane McGuigan. The coach is a man who knows how to prepare a fighter to be fast-tracked in the super-lightweight division, having guided Josh Taylor to a world title in just 15 fights.
However, the Scotsman had a distinguished amateur career and was older.
What Azim lacks in experience, he makes up for in talent. A six-fight knockout streak resulted in a lot of hype, but he has been taken the 10-round scheduled distance in his last two bouts, as he has stepped up in class.
With Azim still in the infancy of his career, he is yet to face a left-handed fighter as a professional, but will be in with an aggressive southpaw as he takes on Petitjean. It will be interesting to see if he can solve the conundrum that style poses.
If Azim is able to dispatch of the champion early, he will make a real statement.
|Hand speed||Can become predictable as a fight progresses|
|Power||Favours single shots over combinations|
|Jab||Throws the right hand from too far out|
Full Fight Markets
All odds displayed within this article were correct at the time of writing and are subject to fluctuation.