bet365’s resident boxing expert Rob Tebbutt outlines his tips ahead of Friday night’s WBO Intercontinental title showdown between Britain’s unbeaten Dennis McCann and the dangerous Romanian contender, Ionut Baluta.
He came over to these shores last time out and upset the previously unbeaten Andrew Cain, and carries a wealth of experience having previously taken on the likes of Michael Conlan, Liam Davies and David Oliver Joyce, who he enjoyed a brilliant win over in just three rounds a couple of years ago.
Ionut Baluta is tried and tested and he will have touched down in the UK determined to unseat Dennis McCann this weekend.
We’ve all heard about McCann’s talent over the last few years and we have absolutely seen it on fight nights – that slick southpaw style; he also carries good power in both hands, but make no mistake about it, this is a real step up in terms of quality of opponent.
If he is off the boil and not everything that we have been told he is, then the British fighter could well struggle against Baluta, who, for me, is a fringe world-level operator and somebody who will give McCann problems.
McCann should be the stronger of the two early on, show good distance control to keep Baluta at the end of his punches and ultimately win those early exchanges, although there is no doubt for me that with Baluta’s vast experience, he will drag himself into the fight in those middle rounds.
I see this fight playing out where it will be on Dennis McCann during those ‘championship rounds’ - across 11 and 12 - to really bite down on his gum shield and just about see the fight through to a successful conclusion.
I really like that price of 4/6, as I have mentioned, to get it done on points, but if you are one of those fancying Ionut Baluta to come over here again and upset the apple cart, just as he did in his last bout, then you can get a massive on him winning a decision and rocking another unbeaten prospect.
But, for me, I will be backing ‘The Menace’ to chalk up a points victory at 4/6 and extend his winning record to 15-0 on Friday night.
Fight Result - Dennis McCann
Under 10.5 Rounds
Was 1/1 >> Now 9/2
Round Group Betting (4):
Dennis McCann to win in Rounds 1 - 6
Was 8/1 >> Now 9/1
Dennis McCann to win in Round 8
Was 18/1 >> Now 22/1