‘Baggies Bomber’ makes 168lbs inauguration against Baptiste Castegnaro
Former British and Commonwealth middleweight champion Tommy Langford (20-3) steps up to super-middleweight for the first time in his pro career to tackle Frenchman Baptiste Castegnaro (8-16) on March 9 at the Walsall Town Hall on a BCB Promotions event.
He said immediately after the weigh-in on Friday, March 8, “It’s a different experience, to be fair, it’s a new chapter in my career being with BCB [Promotions] and, to be perfectly honest, I’m a working man now; I’m having to work and train, and balance the two, but actually it’s a breath of fresh air for me.”
Langford has operated at middleweight for his entire professional career and even further back into his amateur career, counting a decade of competing at 160lbs in total.
“Making super-middle, don’t get me wrong because I still have to work to make it, but I feel so much stronger on fight week. I used to be dying to make the weight but you don’t realise it at the time because you’re the champion so you keep doing what you’re doing and just suck it up and grind it out, but I’m definitely better for it, but proof in the pudding will be in the performance tomorrow.”
Visiting fighter, Castegnaro, has knocked out half of his victims, but hasn’t had his arm raised in any of his last eight contests. Only two opponents from 16 defeats have managed to stop the 28-year-old from southwest France – British super-middleweight champion Zach Parker being the first to register a TKO win in June 2017.
“I’m fighting a fully-fledged super-middleweight not a blown-up middleweight, he’s tough, rugged and strong, bit awkward as well and can make it messy, but just got to go and do a job on him,” the 29-year-old from Birmingham asserted.
Castegnaro tackled both Olympic bronze medalist Joshua Buatsi and ex-English champion Liam Conroy, who both meet for the vacant British light-heavyweight title on March 23. He put up a brave show against Buatsi, who eventually earned a fifth-round stoppage win at London’s York Hall in September 2017, but managed to give Conroy a standing eight-count in their prior meeting, losing narrowly on points – 59-57.
“Buatsi is a light-heavyweight and Olympian,” Langford continued. “I know Zach Parker very well, he’s the British super-middleweight champion, but he [Castegnaro] took him to eight rounds in their fight and Buatsi to five, so I think the key is to box him and use my feet and stick to what I know.
“He’s been in with high-calibre fighters and he’s durable, so I’ve got to perform tomorrow.”
The BCB Promotions ‘Pride of the Midlands’ event also features unbeaten welterweight Conah Walker (3-0) as he goes up against Arvydas Trizno (27-85-3) in a six-rounder; Midlands Area middleweight champion Tyler Denny (10-1-2) appears as he targets bigger title fights this year; undefeated lightweight Connor Lee Jones (2-0) and Wolves welterweight Kirstie Bavington (1-0-1) are also in action.
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