Exclusive: Jerome Pampellone Talks Upcoming IBF Light Heavyweight Title Eliminator: ‘Biggest Fight Of My Life’

Jerome Pampellone

Undefeated light heavyweight Jerome Pampellone (18-0) has been hailed as one of the best prospects to emerge from the New Zealand scene in a long time.

Pampellone, No.4 in the IBF light heavyweight rankings, now has a chance to cement a world title shot when he takes on undefeated Libyan, Malik Zinad (21-0) on April 24 in Sydney, Australia, in an IBF light heavyweight title eliminator on the undercard of Nikita Tszyu vs. Danilo Creati.

The 27-year-old London-born fighter confirmed his credentials last December with a stunning first-round TKO victory over Mexican veteran Rogelio Medina Luna. Luna, who had gone the distance with the likes of Caleb Plant, never stood a chance as Pampellone overpowered him from the opening moments of the 10-round contest.

His matchup with Zinad will be Pampellone’s first fight with the Australian-based promotion No Limit Boxing, and is shaping up to be a potentially life-changing opportunity. Victory on April 24 will see the winner of Pampellone-Zinad in line for a shot at either Artur Beterbiev – the current IBF champion – or Dmitry Bivol after two of boxing’s titans agreed to compete in a unification bout in Saudi Arabia on June 1.

“I’m excited, man. It’s getting super serious now. We’ve jumped on with No Limit, which I’m really thankful for. This is the biggest fight of my life,” Pampellone says, speaking to Boxing Daily.

“Someone’s 0’s got to go, that’s what everyone says. But like I said, I’ve prepared all these years of boxing for this time to come, and I’m ready for it. I’m super excited, and the time is right now; I’m ready.”

Standing at 6′ 1″ and with 16KOs to his name, the 30-year-old Zinad will not be flying out to Australia simply to take in the view of the Sydney Opera House. Pampellone has watched footage of his opponent and knows he must get past Zinad’s reach in order to go to work.

Pampellone has stopped his last three opponentsin the opening round, and with 11KOs to his name, no one will be surprised if the contest fails to make it to the scorecards.

A win may also help Pampellone eventually take a trip to the UK to compete. While he proudly fights under the banner of West Auckland’s Peach Boxing, Pampellone is also currently the no.4 ranked British light heavyweight, and he makes no secret of his desire to lace up his gloves in his birthplace.

” All my family’s still there. So that’s a big goal of mine to go back to England, but it’s getting there, and those big fights will come. I just got to keep winning, keep knocking on that door, and it will happen.”

Pampellone is part of a new era in New Zealand boxing. His stablemate Andrei Mikhailovich is set for an IBF middleweight title eliminator in the coming months, while IBO super bantamweight champion Mea Motu, another teammate of Pampellone, is eyeing up title unification bouts later this year.

The team has spent years working out of the international media’s spotlight, which rarely shines down on the South Pacific. However, Pampellone is confident that soon, the world will wake up to what he and Peach Boxing have been steadily been building.

“All these years, we’ve been on this grind as a team, and like I said, everyone’s just starting to see it now.”

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