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Weekend boxing tips from Rob Tebbutt including Edgar Berlanga v Padraig McCrory & Andy Cruz v Brayan Zamarripa

With no major domestic action taking place this weekend, our resident boxing expert Rob Tebbutt takes a look at five bouts taking place overseas and reveals where the betting value can be found across them all.

Edgar Berlanga v Padraig McCrory Tips
Andy Cruz v Brayan Zamarripa Tips
Alejandro Santiago v Junto Nakatani Tips
Kosei Tanaka v Christian Bacasegua Tips
Takuma Inoue v Jerwin Ancajas Tips

Edgar Berlanga (1/5) v Padraig McCrory (7/2)
Super-middleweight bout

Edgar Berlanga by KO/TKO in Rounds 7-12 @ 3/1

Super-middleweight contender Edgar Berlanga looks to stake his claim for a big fight this weekend, as he takes on Belfast’s Padraig McCrory in Orlando.

After an astonishing start to his career in which he scored 16 consecutive first round KOs, Berlanga has since been the distance in his last five fights.

Though still unbeaten with a 21-0 (16 KOs) record, the perception of Berlanga as a fearsome puncher at 168lbs has cooled somewhat. He’s also shown an inability to cut off the ring when presented with a moving target.

McCrory is unbeaten in 18 fights (9 KOs) and will be full of confidence. On his night, he is a capable, tricky fighter with good power of his own. However, this is a sizeable step up in competition for him and, at 35 years old, will he be able to handle the youth, power and physicality of Berlanga for 12 hard rounds?

For all of his perceived flaws, Berlanga has shown an ability to dig deep, which in itself is a strong trait for any young fighter to have.

We’re yet to see McCrory in the trenches against this calibre of opponent and I feel that the physicality of Berlanga could be the difference as the fight progresses.

Berlanga showed he carried his power late in scoring two final round knockdowns of Jason Quigley last time out, and I’m backing him to go one better and get a game McCrory out of there late on.

Edgar Berlanga v Padraig McCrory

Fight Markets & Bet Boosts

Andy Cruz (2/35) v Brayan Zamarripa (13/1)
Lightweight bout

Andy Cruz by KO/TKO @ 4/9

Cuban maestro Andy Cruz makes the third appearance of his fledgling pro career against the battle-hardened Brayan Zamarripa on the Berlanga v McCrory undercard in the early hours of Sunday morning.

In Cruz, there is every chance we’ll be watching the best lightweight in the world! Of course, with just two professional fights to his name, it’s difficult to prove he belongs atop of one of the sport’s deepest, most talent-rich divisions, but the reigning Olympic champion possesses all of the skills necessary to become a genuine superstar of the sport.

The issue for Cruz and promoter Eddie Hearn will be finding him opponents. Brayan Zamarippa fits the bill as someone young, game and willing - but he will be emphatically overmatched when the two men step in the ring this weekend.

Though a shorter price than I’d usually like to tip, Cruz at 4/9 for the KO/TKO is decent value in itself and definitely worth including to beef up some fight night accumulators.

Andy Cruz v Brayan Zamarripa

Fight Markets & Bet Boosts

Alejandro Santiago (5/1) v Junto Nakatani (1/8)
WBC bantamweight title

Junto Nakatani by Decision/Technical Decision @ 6/4

Junto Nakatani seeks to become a three-weight world champion on Saturday against battle-hardened WBC bantamweight champion Alejandro Santiago.

Although he picked up his first world title at flyweight, Nakatani has an enormous frame and I expect his body to adapt well to the additional poundage, and as he has done in the past, I am backing him to continue to be successful against the bigger man this weekend.

Santiago, who won his world title last time out against Filipino legend Nonito Donaire, is a solid, workmanlike operator with a good chin and respectable punching power.

He has shared the ring with several top class fighters and, while not always successful, is a good test for Nakatani in his maiden bout at bantamweight.

Despite Nakatani’s obvious punching power at the lighter weights, I do see this fight going the distance. Santiago is experienced, fit and durable and though I don’t see him winning the fight, I do expect him to make Nakatani work for a hard-fought decision victory.

Alejandro Santiago v Junto Nakatani

Fight Markets & Bet Boosts

Konsei Tanaka (1/6) v Christian Bacasegua (4/1)
WBO super-flyweight title

Kosei Tanaka by KO/TKO @ 15/8
Kosei Tanaka by KO/TKO in Rounds 7-12 @ 4/1

Kosei Tanaka makes his second attempt at becoming a super-flyweight world champion as he meets unheralded Mexican Christian Bacasegua.

Tanaka, already a three-weight world champion, last fought for a 115lb title when he was stopped by fellow Japanese star Kazuto Ioka on New Year’s Eve in 2020.

But since then, he has responded well; picking up four wins, two via stoppage, to put himself back in the frame for another crack at becoming a four division champ.

In Bacasegua, he has the perfect opportunity to do just that.

The Mexican boasts a largely unimpressive 22-4-2 resume against less-than-stellar opposition and looks tailor-made for Tanaka to not only win, but win in good fashion.

The Mexican is tall, tough and awkward, but I expect him to be thoroughly outmatched and be picked apart by the much better technician - before being stopped inside the distance.

Konsei Tanaka v Christian Bacasegua

Fight Markets & Bet Boosts

Takuma Inoue (4/9) v Jerwin Ancajas (7/4)
WBA bantamweight title

Jerwin Ancajas to Win @ 7/4
Jerwin Ancajas by Decision/Technical Decision @ 3/1

In the most evenly matched fight of the weekend, Japan’s Takuma Inoue defends his WBA bantamweight title against former, long-time IBF super-flyweight champion Jerwin Ancajas.

Takuma, brother of pound-for-pound superstar Naoya Inoue, will be making the first defence of his title and, on paper, is doing so against the toughest opponent of his career so far.

Though Ancajas looked poor in a pair of decision defeats to Fernando Martinez back in 2022, he is vastly more experienced at championship level than Inoue and is still just 32-years-old.

The issue for Ancajas is his lack of experience at the bantamweight limit, having boxed just once last year at 118lbs before landing a title shot.

Inoue possesses solid fundamentals, but he can also be outboxed, as shown in his defeat to Nordine Oubaali back in November 2019.

The Ancajas of a few years ago would surely have been a red-hot favourite, but two tough losses to Martinez and a spell of inactivity have tipped the scales against him.

However, if the Filipino turns up somewhere near his best, this is a fight he can win - and all of the value is on him.

Takuma Inoue v Jerwin Ancajas

Fight Markets & Bet Boosts

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