Queensberry Promotions have announced that Liam Davies will face Ionut Baluta for the vacant European title at 122 lbs on Saturday, Nov. 19, headlining a BT Sport show from Telford, England.
Light heavyweight contender Anthony Yarde will also return on the show in a stay-busy fight, after plans to enforce his mandatory title shot against Artur Beterbiev fell through due to a Beterbiev injury. There had been some talk of Yarde fighting Joshua Buatsi, which will definitely not be this fight, and things between Queensberry and Matchroom are possibly pretty icy at the moment after the mess that was the Fury vs Joshua negotiations.
In addition to those two bouts, David Avanesyan will defend his European welterweight title against Jon Miguez, a 25-year-old from Spain who is at least ranked top 50 in the world by BoxRec, making for a big step up from Avanesyan’s last fight with Oskari Metz in March.
Davies (12-0, 5 KO) is 26 and emerging as a possible contender in a division that is, frankly, fairly weak at the moment past its top few fighters. He beat Marc Leach for the British title back in June, and now will aim for European glory against Baluta (15-3, 3 KO), a solid veteran from Romania who gave Michael Conlan a good fight in 2021 after wins over Kyle Williams, TJ Doheny, and Davey Oliver Joyce in 2019-20.
Yarde (22-2, 21 KO) last fought in Dec. 2021, stopping Lyndon Arthur in the fourth round of their rematch, a year after Arthur edged a split decision over him. He’s spent most of this year just waiting to get the Beterbiev fight set — he was actually Joe Smith Jr’s WBO mandatory, but stepped aside to allow Beterbiev vs Smith with a guarantee to face the winner. He needs to fight, and this will be a fight.
Avanesyan (29-3-1, 17 KO) had some people really excited with his three-fight barrage in Spain back in 2019, then a 2021 win over Josh Kelly, but he seems fully content to stay at European level, too. Earlier this year, he was expected to fight Vergil Ortiz Jr, then never actually signed the deal.