BROWNE TO FACE BASILE IN MELBOURNE
By TOM WATT on July 17 2015
After months of waiting, Australia’s number one heavyweight, Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne finally has an opponent and a date to set his sights on. The hard-hitting Aussie has been frustrated with the lack of movement since he was crowned the mandatory challenger for Ruslan Chagaev’s WBA belt after a series of issues forced postponement to a number of Chagaev’s scheduled bouts.
Browne’s promoter, the legendary Ricky Hatton, has finally heard the prayers of ‘Big Daddy’ and his legions of fans who have been clamouring to see the undefeated star back in action for the first time since his TKO win over Chauncy Welliver in November of last year. Browne’s next opponent will be seasoned Argentinian, Gonzalo Basile (pictured top left) who holds a very respectable record of 66-11-0 with 30 of those victories coming via Knockout. Here’s what Hatton had to say on making this bout:
“It’s a very tough fight and a potential banana skin for Lucas, but everyone knows how hard he hits and I think Lucas will score another knockout.
“Lucas is the kind of guy who wants to fight every week and he’s obviously been disappointed with the delay [to the Chagaev bout], but he now understands that it’s not the fault of Hatton Promotions or the WBA.
“Chagaev’s people wanted to delay the fight so they could face Francesco Pianeta and paid Lucas money to step aside. That fight got pushed back and then Fres Oquendo went through the courts to get a rematch with Chagaev.
“Now we’re on the verge of everything being sorted out and if Lucas gets past Basile, his next fight will be for the world title.
“Chagaev has 120 days to face Oquendo and then he has to fight Lucas. If that doesn’t happen, the title will be vacant and Lucas will fight for it. Either way he gets his shot.
“I don’t think we’ve been given enough credit for the job we’ve done with Lucas. Before we signed him he was boxing on small shows for very little money. Since he’s been with us, he’s fought for career-best purses and we’ve got him to the verge of becoming Australia’s first ever world heavyweight champion.
“Believe me, there’s not many promoters who would put their fighters in with an opponent like Basile when there’s the chance it could cost them a world title shot, but we have faith in Lucas’s ability.
“I 100% believe he’ll smash Basile next month and then he’ll smash Chagaev.”
It’s worth noting that Basile has rarely fought outside of Argentina and has only fought 6 times outside of his home country with only a few of those outside of South America, most recently a DQ win in Spain earlier this year. So this will be new territory for one of the division’s most active fighters which will be good news for Browne. Basle is a tricky fighter with the experience that 394 rounds of professional Boxing brings with it and Browne will need to keep a cool head against the Argentinian veteran, known as ‘El Paton’ (‘The Boss’).
Browne vs Basile will be shown on free-to-air TV in Australia on Channel 9 and will give the Australian public another chance to see their number 1 heavyweight in action before he once again turns his attention to Chagaev and the WBA Title.
1. FLOYD MAYWEATHER JR.
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