A young Kirkintilloch boxer is gearing up to take on a former Syrian and Arabic champion in only his third professional fight.
Ally Black will take on Yossef Al Hamidi, who is now based in England, at Rivals Gym, in Wishaw, on Saturday, January 15.
The 26-year-old fighter made his professional debut in April 2012, when he bravely fought on to a win after fracturing his hand in the second round.
Although the painful injury didn’t cost him the fight, it did put his career on hold for a full 19 months.
Ally, who helps train other local fighters in Kirkintilloch, made his comeback against Manchester-based Paul Haines in December, on the undercard of a Scottish featherweight title bout in the Gorbals.
He won again with a second round stoppage to maintain his 100 per cent record, and this time emerged from the bout unscathed.
Now he’s set to take a big step up in class against the Syrian, in a match-up organised by his manager Alex Morrison - who also takes care of World Lightweight Champion Ricky Burns.
Al Haimidi had a glittering career as an amateur boxer, landing a bronze medal in the Army World National Championships, as well as spending a decade as Syrian Champion.
Since turning professional he’s taken on a number of big names, including Ricky Burns, former world super featherweight champion Nicky Cook and reigning featherweight title holder Lee Selby.
He also caused a massive shock when he overcame the odds to beat Anthony Crolla - who went on to lift the WBO inter-continental lightweight title.
Ally told the Herald: “It is a big step up for me and I’m nervous about the fight but I’ve been training hard and will give it my best shot.
“He’s got a reputation as a bit of a scrapper, so I know he’ll give me a good fight.
“My manager set the fight up, so he obviously thinks I can beat him.”
Ally will be boxing in front of over 300 fight fans and is hoping that there will be a good home support to cheer him to victory.
He said: “There’s quite a few people who are going to be travelling from Kirkintilloch to the fight, and it would be great to see as many people from the town there as possible.
“We’re going to put a bus on so if anybody needs to be sorted out with a ticket they can get in touch with me.”
If you would like to support Ally you can find him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ally.black.56