Slough’s rising star Adam Azim looks to continue shining brightly as he attempts to become European super-lightweight champion in record time; Azim, in just his 10th bout, faces current titlist Franck Petitjean on November 18 in Wolverhampton, live on Sky Sports
Wednesday 8 November 2023 17:41, UK
Adam Azim is looking to return to regular habits - ending fights early.
With two decision victories in 2023, Azim is looking to restart his run of knockout wins once more, this time at European championship level as he takes on Franck Petitjean on November 18, live on Sky Sports.
Confident he can get an inside-the-distance finish next week, Azim is positive too that his last performance, a points victory over tough, seasoned Aram Faniian, will have left him well-equipped to ensure victory whatever happens against Petitjean.
"I'm going to be taking it to him," Azim told Sky Sports. "I'm ready for this fight and eager for the knockout."
The Faniian fight was Azim's second 10 rounder of 2023. He began the year going the distance with Santos Reyes to record another solid victory.
"I've proven a lot. I've proven that I can box, proven that I can go the full rounds, and that I can get hit and take a shot as well. Them two fights I've had this year are valuable rounds. I will learn more [from them] than knocking people out," he said.
He needed to used his patience against Faniian. "I could have got the knockout early but it's about timing and getting it right," he said.
Fighting for the illustrious European title in Wolverhampton on November 18 is coming at an early stage in Azim's professional career. He has only had nine pro bouts so far.
The undefeated super-lightweight recognises the opportunity it presents and the challenge of trying to dethrone the reigning champion.
"It's been a great year for me, now I'm fighting for the European title which is a massive thing and I'm eager to grab that belt with both hands," Azim said.
"It's the gateway to the world title, it's a massive title that people recognise."
"He [Petitjean] is a good fighter, experienced fighter and he's done well for himself," he continued. "But when he feels my speed and power, he's not going to be coming forward like what he was doing before."
"I'll be the quickest [Briton] to win the European title, I think Spencer Oliver had 11 fights [when he won it]."
The 21-year-old won't underestimate his opponent, although he believes Petitjean will make a mistake in how he chooses to approach their fight.
"He's going to be committing quite a lot but when he comes forward and tries getting inside, that's the wrong tactics. I can fight inside as well but he hasn't seen that. I'm even better with southpaws," Azim said.
"So he's in a world of trouble."
Focused on victory, Azim goes as far as predicting how he will knock out the champion.
"It's either going to be the backhand, the right or left hook or even the uppercut because I've knocked a lot of southpaws out with the uppercut," he said.
Becoming European champion would place Azim on every super-lightweight's radar. It signifies rapid progression and would be a step towards where he truly wants to be. He is aiming to beat Petitjean and then defend the championship before moving to world level.
"You've got the likes of Jack Catterall, Harlem Eubank, Dalton Smith, these fights down the line would be great," he said. "We're all trying to get that No 1 spot, but who will get there first?"
For the moment though, one of Britain's most exciting prospects is headed in the right direction.