Kash Farooq: Matchroom Boxing debut will be my next chapter

Kash Farooq (13-1, 6 KOs) finally makes his debut as a Matchroom Boxing fighter when he takes on Mexico's Martin Tecuapetla (15-12-4, 10 KOs) at The SSE Arena, Wembley on Saturday, October 31.

The former British bantamweight champion has waited almost a year to avenge the first and so far only professional defeat of his career, when he lost the belt in his most recent outing via split decision to fellow Scotsman Lee McGregor in a bout many felt he won.

Like many other competitors, the Pakistan-born 24-year-old has COVID-19 to thank for the extended period without action, and Farooq is anxious to get back into the thick of it on Halloween night, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and on DAZN in all of its nine markets including the U.S.

“I’ve kept myself active and busy during this period," he said. "Whether it’s running or doing circuits in a park, anything to keep myself active. I was hoping to box maybe three times this year but it’s just one of those things, I am just grateful to be back in the ring.

“Having the break off has helped me. I’ve come back fitter, stronger and healthier so it has been good. I have taken a step back and worked on a few things, slowing things down and working on punches and technique.

"When you have a fight date sometimes you forget about working on the other things which is what I’ve been able to do.

“All I want to do is continue to improve. I’ve had great sparring in preparation for this fight.

"This is the next stage of my career, it’s time to go to the next level. I’m looking forward to making my Matchroom debut in this next chapter."

Farooq hopes to be part of what he considers to be a strong wave of young Scottish talent rising up the domestic ranks.

He said: “There's a good few Scottish fighters at the moment, all with good TV contracts, and I believe any of them could be topping a bill at The Hydro soon.

"I’m good friends with Hannah Rankin and I will be cheering her on this weekend. She came up the hard way like me without any amateur background, it’s a tough fight against Savannah Marshall but she is more than capable of winning it.

“I think everyone can expect a fan-friendly style with a lot of head movement. I’m bringing something different, that’s what people can expect!”

Farooq vs. Tecuapetla lands on an undercard headlined by Oleksandr Usyk's (17-0, 13 KOs) heavyweight clash with Derek Chisora (32-9, 23 KOs). In chief support, Lee Selby (28-2, 9 KOs) and George Kambosos Jr (18-0, 10 KOs) go one-on-one in a final eliminator for the IBF lightweight championship.

Elsewhere on the first of four Matchroom cards at the SSE, Marshall (8-0, 6 KOs) and Rankin (9-4, 2 KOs) contest their rescheduled bout for the vacant WBO middleweight strap, while heavyweight Dave Allen (18-5-2, 15 KOs) returns against American KO artist Christopher Lovejoy (19-0, 19 KOs).

Plus, Tommy McCarthy (16-2, 8 KOs) meets Bilal Laggoune (25-1-2, 14 KOs) for the vacant European Cruiserweight title and Amy Timlin (4-0) faces off with Carly Skelly (3-0) for the vacant Commonwealth super-bantamweight belt.

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