20 Things You Didn't Know About David Haye's Next Opponent

Published On Thursday, March 31, 2016By British Boxing News

20 Things You Didn't Know About David Haye opponent, Arnold Gjergjaj

It was announced this week that David Haye’s next ring opponent on May 21st at The O2 Arena in London will be unbeaten Swiss boxing star - Arnold Gjergjaj.  

The 31-year-old unbeaten heavyweight from Switzerland is well-known in his native country but unheard of by most outside despite notching up a respectable unbeaten record and recently collecting his first title.      

BBN found out a few facts about 'The Cobra' for the fans to get to know him better ahead of his May 21st visit to London.  

1. Arnold Gjergjaj was born in Gjakova, Kosovo and moved to Pratteln, Basel-Landschaft, Switzerland aged 14 in 1999.

2. He is a triple amateur Swiss champion.

3. He first started up as a wrestler at a very young age in Kosovo, then had a stint in kick-boxing when he first arrived in Switzerland, competing in seven fights before deciding to stick to doing only boxing.

4. He trained as and completed an apprenticeship as a heating engineer.

5. He turned professional at the age of 25 in 2009.

6. He is 6ft 5” tall.

7. Nicknamed 'The Cobra' for his hard, fast striking ability, Gjergjaj actually has a phobia of snakes!

8. Gjergjaj fights for the boxing club Basel and is coached by Angelo Gallina.

9. His idol and model for his boxing skills is the British former undisputed world champion, Lennox Lewis.

10. He used to train and spar with Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko.

11. He has only fought outside of his home country once in November 2011, defeating Hungarian Lazslo Toth in his own backyard via third round KO

12. He is involved in a number of different charitable organisations and has won awards for his work with the youth activities in his hometown of Pratteln.

13. His current record stands at 29 wins-0 losses with 21 KOs - that's a 72% KO ratio.

14. He is the No.1 ranked heavyweight in Switzerland and listed at 35th with the WBC, and 29th on BoxRec.

15. He is the current EBU-EE (European External European Union) heavyweight champion.

16. He became the first ever boxer fighting under a Swiss boxing licence to win the EBU-EE version of the European heavyweight championship.

17. He has taken the unbeaten records from four fighters - Zoltan Csala (6-0), Adnan Redzovic (15-0), Janne Katijisto (13-0-1), and Mateusz Malujda (3-0).

18. He has competed in 123 rounds in his six-and-a-half year professional boxing career.

19. His most notable win was a unanimous decision over former WBC International heavyweight champion, Dennis Bakhtov in June 2015, having to climb off the canvas to retain his EBU-EE  belt.

20. He has already warned David Haye not to underestimate him when they meet and that he plans to remain unbeaten.