The D-Day is here, not only for Indian star boxer Vijender Singh, but also for boxing fans around the world. The 2008 Beijing Olympics bronze medallist makes his debut as a pro at the Manchester Arena today, and facing him will be Britain's Sonny Whiting.
It all started in June this year when the 29-year-old quits his amateur career and decided to make his foray into the pro boxing scene. The Bhiwani pugilist also explained that the much-revered 'Fight of the Century' this year between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao inspired him to take up pro boxing.
And now, following a month of hard work in Manchester, and gruelling sessions of sparring under Lee Beard, Vijender is now looking forward to entering the ring once more and starting-off things with a bang.
"I am looking forward to a winning start. I am not under any pressure, I am taking this as a responsibility. My performance in professional boxing will open new hopes for young Indian boxers," Vijender spoke to PTI, on the eve of the bout.
"I am eagerly waiting to enter the ring against Sonny. My strategy is to go in and hit very hard," he said.
Vijender goes glove-to-glove with Whiting in a four-round middleweight bout, and the Indian, also deemed as the favourite going into the fight, has to be wary of his opponent, who has a knockout win under his belt.
"I'm a proud fighter who will go in there and give it everything I've got and I'm not laying down in front of anyone," Whiting said.
"He's making his debut and I'll give him a hard welcome to the professional game. What he's done as an amateur doesn't count, he's now with the big boys in the pros.
"I don't care if Vijender is a superstar or a regular boxer, the result will be the same, I am going to smash him up," he said," the 26-year-old Brit made clear of his intent.
For Vijender, who will be making his entrance tonight to the tunes of 'Singh is King', the key is remaining calm, as he states that his intention is to reply Whiting not verbally, but through hard left and rights crosses.
"I am totally focused and waiting for the right moment to reply in the ring. I am not at all bothered by his comments. I will reply with my punches," Vijender said.
Where to Watch Live
The four-round middleweight bout between Vijender Singh and Sonny Whiting starts at 10:30 pm IST (6pm BST, 1pm ET).
Audience in India can watch Vijender in action in his debut pro boxing fight on SONY SIX/HD, and STREAM the boxing bout Live on LivSports.
Audience in the UK and Ireland can catch the middleweight bout, which will be featured on the undercard of the Terry Flanagan vs Diego Magdaleno bout, which will be broadcast live on BoxNation (Sky 437/HD 490, Virgin 546 and Talk Talk 415) starting at 5PM BST.