BoxRec News correspondent Altaf Mubarik caught up with rising star Frank Buglioni to discuss his debut win (which came at Wembley Arena on 5th November, by way of first round stoppage) and his future prospects.
Altaf: It was a pleasure seeing your explosive first round debut win against Sabie Montieth. Did you expect your debut to go the way it did?
Frank Buglioni: I was very pleased with my debut. I didn’t expect a first round knockout if I’m perfectly honest. We knew Sabie was strong and tough from videos we had seen before and knew he was better than his record suggested. But the shot landed and I couldn’t ask for better on my debut.
Altaf: Did you follow Mark Tibbs' instructions or do you feel that you made some mistakes?
Frank Buglioni: Mark Tibbs’ instructions were to go out and take charge of the fight and try to put Sabie on the back foot. I took a couple of jabs whilst doing that but felt the tactics went to plan and I followed them to how we had prepared.
Altaf: Were you surprised by the immense support you had at Wembley Arena? Did you have this kind of support in the amateur ranks?
Frank Buglioni: The support was immense, I knew I had sold a lot of tickets, but on the night it really brought something else out of me. I would like to thank everyone that came out, it made the debut a special night for me. I also owe a lot of thanks to Lee Hurst, a good friend of mine and my sponsor Pride Scaffolding for their effort on selling a large number of tickets.
Altaf: I heard that you fought for Team GB and England in the past, how many times and in which tournaments?
Frank Buglioni: I boxed for and trained with the GB Podium squad for around 18 months. I had a great time with all the coaches and boxers and learnt a great deal along the way. I went on numerous multi-nation training camps and boxed around 9 or 10 times with the squad, my best result being a silver medal at the commonwealth federations in India. I had a few fights with Young England before being selected for the GB Team.
Altaf: I heard you lost controversially in the ABA semis on countback. Please give us more details as to what happened.
Frank Buglioni: I decided to turn pro after the ABA defeat because I felt winning the ABAs would have given me a good shot to go to the Olympic qualifiers. However, without the ABA title it would have been hard to justify the number 1 spot. I felt I did enough in the Semi Final fight to have won it, but I take nothing away from John Dignum, who went on to win the title. I believe I was never truly suited to the amateur boxing scoring system. I like to throw body shots and combinations which aren’t always favoured. I won the majority of my fights via stoppage and boxed at high international level so I felt it was a natural progression to go into the pro ranks. After briefly training with Mark Tibbs, I knew he was the right man to train me and decided to go full time with him.
Altaf: Who have you been sparring with? Any notable names? Who were you most impressed with in sparring?
Frank Buglioni: I have sparred James DeGale on a few occasions as well as George Groves, I was also fortunate enough to have trained with Carl Froch whilst I was in Sheffield. I was very impressed with Degale and Groves. They both bring different strengths to the ring. Furthermore, I learnt a lot from Froch and sharing the ring with him showed me how many different levels there are in boxing. Just by being around him and seeing his attitude to training was a great experience.
Altaf: Have you got a message to send out to the super-middleweight division?
Frank Buglioni: I would love to follow in the footsteps of Groves, Degale and Froch, who I admire and respect.
Altaf: Have you got a message you want to send out to all your fans and the BoxRec members?
Frank Buglioni: I just want to thank all the fans that take time out to follow and be a part of the sport I love. Without the fans the sport is nothing. I hope I can keep entertaining the people that follow me and show my appreciation by performing well in front of them.