Brad Foster believes his next opponent Ionut Baluta is the best super-bantamweight in Europe.
The former British and Commonwealth champion is back in the ring at York Hall on Friday night against the Romanian live on BT Sport.
The WBC International belt is on the line and represents Foster’s first fight since narrowly losing his challenge for European honours against Jason Cunningham in October.
“He is a very good fighter, probably the best in Europe, to be honest,” Foster said of Baluta.
The 24-year-old says he wasn’t interested in coming back with an eight-round formality, instead opting for a test against ‘Il Capo’.
“It is easy to do an eight-rounder and just beat someone up, I’d rather have a fight that actually means something and take a bit of a risk. That is how you get recognised in this game, taking risks.”
Foster is eyeing a rematch with Cunningham who will be ringside to watch his former opponent on Friday. Domestically the 122lbs division is getting stronger and stronger. The likes of British champion Marc Leach, his next opponent Liam Davies, as well Andrew Cain, Chris Bourke and Dennis McCann could all be future adversaries, many of whom fight under the Queensbury Promotions banner.“It is a good division and if these fights benefit me and mean a good step in my career, I am open to it. I just want good fights. They would be action-packed fights and I see myself at the top of that pile. I want to push on and they ain’t in my way, they need to fight me to get where I am. I am looking at people like Baluta, who is a step in the direction of world titles and getting those ranking points.
“That is why I wanted to fight him because it will progress me. Fighting the others at the minute doesn’t progress me. Yes, they are good fights, but they don’t push me towards world titles.”