WILLY HUTCHINSON WILL fight for his first major title at light heavyweight when he takes on the experienced Croatian Emil Markic for the WBO Intercontinental Championship at the OVO Arena, Wembley on January 28.

The former World Amateur champion will add to the light heavyweight theme of the night, which is headlined by Anthony Yarde’s challenge for the unified world titles of the unbeaten champion Artur Beterbiev. Young light heavyweight contender Karol Itauma also fights for his first professional title on the show, with the WBC International title on the line in his fight.

Hutchinson, 24, made an unsuccessful assault on the British super middleweight title against Lennox Clarke in March 2021 before swiftly heading back to the 175lb ranks and clocking up victories over Karel Horejsek and Luca Spadaccini, which both ended via stoppage.

The Scot currently holds a record of 15-1, with 11 of his wins coming by way of KO.

Markic is a seasoned campaigner with 36 fights under his belt – with just three defeats – and is known in the UK for engaging in a shootout against Callum Johnson at York Hall in April 2021 in a fight for the WBO Global title.

Johnson was heavily rocked and on the brink of defeat in the first round before recovering and himself forcing a stoppage in the second.

Markic won the WBO European title in 2019 with victory over Tomas Adamek, having won the same title the previous year via defeat of Kavin Gebhard. 2018 also saw him win the WBF world light heavyweight title by overcoming Denis Liebau and in 2015 he also held a WBU version of the title.

Hutchinson is thrilled to find himself back in the title mix.

“This is my big moment to break into the title mix at light heavyweight and set myself on the path towards fighting for a world title. That is where I intend to get to and first I’ve got to do a good job on a tough fighter in Emil Markic.

“Markic has a lot of experience and it is the sort of fight I need to move myself up to the next level. I will be putting on a show on January 28 and reminding everyone of what I am all about.

“I am getting right back to my best and working hard every day over here in Spain, putting in the hours and improving all the time.

“It is a fantastic show to be on at Wembley and I will be watching the main event with interest once I get my belt around my waist.”