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Bakole is the younger brother of Ilunga Makabu and came to Liverpool last May to support him when he fought Tony Bellew for the vacant WBC cruiserweight title at Goodison Park.

He stayed and ended up in Preston with Johnney Roye.

Roye got him some fights, including a first-round stoppage of former Southern Area champion Dominic Akinlade, and Bakole asked Nelson to train him this summer after a sparring session with Stephen Simmons.

His first fight under Nelson, and Barry McGuigan’s Cyclone Promotions, was a six-round points win over Kamil Sokolowski at the York Hall last month.

McGuigan wasn’t overly impressed and Nelson put that down to tiredness.

Bakole was with him at a show in Edinburgh the night before and was up early the next morning to catch the train down to London for the fight.

“He was flat,” said Nelson, “and he still smashed an opponent who was tough-as-old-boots.

“He broke his nose, gave him a leathering and that was Martin when he wasn’t feeling good about himself.”

Nelson expects Bakole to dish out similar punishment to Baghouz, a 29 year old from Belgium with a 10-0-1 (6) record who fought Joshua in the amateurs.

Joshua beat him on the way to gold at the Haringey Box Cup at Alexandra Palace in 2009.

“He’s a come forward fighter,” said Nelson of Baghouz, “but against the level of opposition he’s been fighting.

“I don’t think he will be able to do that with Martin.

“Martin is way beyond this level already.”


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