One week removed from an electric third place performance at the 2023 Mr. Olympia, Samson Dauda is set to take the stage again this weekend against a star-studded lineup at the Romania Muscle Fest Pro.
Despite establishing himself as one of the premier talents in all of bodybuilding during Olympia weekend, securing a win in Romania is still far from a certainty, as he’s set to square off against a hungry Nathan Deasha, who was denied entry into the country just days before the Olympia was set to take place due to a visa issue; and the latest reports from Nathan’s camp indicate that he’s set to take the stage nearly ten pounds heavier than he was during his dominant win at the Flex Pro back in early September.
In addition to De Asha, who was projected by many to be a top six Olympia contender in his own right this year, Samson is also set to square off against the razor sharp Behroz Tabani, who was unable to compete on the Olympia stage for the second consecutive year due to travel restrictions. Although he’s looked like a top-tier competitor at times over the past two seasons, this will be the biggest test of Tabani’s IFBB career, as he’s never truly faced elite competition with iron clad resumes like he’ll see this weekend from Dauda and De Asha.
Another interesting subplot heading into Romania Muscle Fest is the presence of Marcello “Horse M.D.” De Angelis, who’s finally slated to make his highly anticipated IFBB debut.
De Angelis, who earned his pro card by winning the overall at the Expo Super Show in 2021, was touted as someone who could be the heir apparent reigning and defending five-time Classic Physique Olympia champ coming out of the amateur ranks. However, after missing out on two previous attempts to step onto a pro stage, and a few strategic decisions by his team, De Angelis is entering into the IFBB scene as an Open competitor in a lineup that features a handful of athletes who can win nearly any show on the schedule on a given night.
However, if De Angelis can hold serve, and showcase the aesthetics, small waist, and round muscle bellies that generated so much excitement among bodybuilding fans when he first busted onto the scene, it might open the door for him to him to have a significant impact at some of the post Olympia events left on the IFBB schedule between now and the end of the season.