Exclusive: Meng Fanlong Talks Upcoming IBF Title Eliminator: "The Best Is Yet To Come"

Six months ago, Meng Fanlong was staring in the face of former world title challenger Frank Buglioni as an underdog in Monaco. What followed was an impressive performance that saw the true rise of a new contender in the light heavyweight division.

Fanlong dominated Buglioni and his heavy hands cut open his opponent's face to the point where the fight had to be stopped in just five rounds. Fanlong was well on his way to becoming a real player at 175 pounds. 

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Now Fanlong is days away from fighting Adam Deines in Macau, China with the winner becoming the next mandatory challenger to the IBF light heavyweight title. In an interview with Fightful, Fanlong said that November 2018 win over Buglioni was a huge confidence booster and that he will look to translate that confidence into another win and hopefully launch him into a world title fight next.

“That last fight was a huge boost for my confidence. My opponent was really strong, a very tough guy. I was prepared very well for that fight. I did not expect to win that fight as a TKO. I believed I was going to win that fight but not by TKO. That was such a huge boost of confidence heading into this fight,” Fanlong said.

Heading into the fight against Deines, Fanlong is not only confident of his skills of winning the fight, but also of his growth as a pro boxer just 14 fights into his career. Although he has had several solid performances in his short career thus far, the best is still yet to come for the 31-year-old from China. When asked about his prediction, Fanlong said sticking to the gameplan is what will be important for him to get the win, but won't hesistate to go for the knockout if the opportunity arises.

“How should I put it? I put a lot of effort into my fights and in the boxing gym in the last couple of years. I believe that I deserve this and on top of that, I have a great team which really helped me throughout my career. I believe I deserve this opportunity,” Fanlong said. I have been improving all these years and I have been improving in each fight. I can’t really say that I am at my best because I believe the best is yet to come. I do believe that my next fight will be one of my best performances."

Fanlong vs. Deines will take place in Macau, China on June 1 as part of a special boxing card taking place during the annual IBF convention. The full interview with Fanlong can be seen at the top of the page.

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