Dillian Whyte reckons Alexander Povetkin is the most technically talented opponent he has faced in his career.
Brixton’s WBC world interim heavyweight champion faces the Russian at Matchroom Fight Camp on Saturday night.
Povetkin, 40, is a former WBA world title-holder.
Whyte saw his weight balloon for his last ring outing in Saudi Arabia but has slimmed down for this weekend’s clash in Brentwood, Essex.
He said: ”I had two fights last year but my mind wasn’t right. I put weight on. For my last fight I was nearly 20 stone. I got myself in shape slowly. I knew who I was fighting, and what it would take. I got into shape.
“The story of my life is pressure. I’ve been under pressure my entire life. This is just another puzzle. There is more pressure because of the future, but that’s in the future.
“I’m fighting a consummate professional so I’m not bothered about Tyson Fury. I’m bothered about Povetkin. Povetkin is the most technical fighter I’ve fought. He has beaten a lot of top guys. He’s an Olympic gold medallist. He’s only lost two fights. When the bell goes it doesn’t matter if there’s 100,000 people there or 100 people. You are zoned in.
“When I’m in shape, you’ve got problems, because I can do what I like to do. I don’t mind blowing up because I can recover, go again. Whatever he wants to do, I’m cool with it. I don’t like to make predictions. He is very experienced and can look after himself. He’s a tough guy. But listen, if I land early? It is night, night early. But he can do the same, as well.
“I deal with pressure well. I could have taken an easier fight. These are the fights you need to grow. This guy has seen everything, probably 20 guys like me. To beat him, I will bank his experience. This motivates me.
“I will have to think more than I normally do. It gives me an extra edge. ”I’m ready for chaos and violence. I am focused on Povetkin. I will try to hurt him from the first bell.
It will be war – that’s what he does. The great thing is that we both do similar things. It’s up to me to do things to make the fight in my favour, and I am capable of that. He is more experienced but I know how to fight, which isn’t something anyone can teach.”
PICTURES: MARK ROBINSON/MATCHROOM BOXING
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