Hunter and the hunted
BE warned Hughie Fury, run but you can’t hide coming hunting for you.
I’m pumped for my British debut and I believe I have the mental and physical game to take care of this challenge for my WBO world heavyweight belt.
Hughie has had a fair bit to say about his new-found health and supposed power gains. Apparently he’s a different person and will be a different boxer to when he last fought way back in April of last year.
We’ll see about that in the heat of battle. I’m pretty sure that no matter how much he tries to change it up, he will revert to back to what he is used to when times get tough and he gets tired. And believe me, having looked over his previous fights, I’m going to be putting plenty of pressure on him.
I don’t think he backs himself with the power he has. Maybe he has worked on it, but I back myself – I know my weapons and it’s time to go hunting with them.
It’s Hughie’s birthday on the eve of the fight and I plan to give him a belated present he won’t forget. I’m sure he’s got an idea of what’s coming . . . it’s leather-wrapped and it stings.
Don’t get me wrong, I respect Hughie as I respect every opponent. But I’ve never felt better.
It was interesting to hear Hughie suggest he’d faced superior opposition to me. That’s not true and I know I have come through some very tough tests that will serve me well in this fight and my desire to make a mark on the British heavyweight scene.
But once the bell rings you can’t look at past opposition, only what’s in front of you. As the world champion you have to treat your opponent like he’s the best in the world. So Hughie, I have no problems if you want to go to war, I’m ready to go to war. If it goes one round or 12 rounds, I’m ready for whatever.
It’s no secret there’s been a fair bit of feeling around this clash since the moment it was first ordered way back in January. The appointment of a British referee is the latest controversy but if things you and can I’m go to plan, I’ll take the referee out of the equation by putting Hughie away.
Still, I expect the extra edge to this promotion might even sharpen a bit more this week as we approach the fight in Manchester (around 9am next Sunday NZT).
I’m also expecting plenty of noise on fight night. Hughie’s an Irish Traveller and I know they are very supportive of each other. Hughie’s also a Manchester local and I’m in his back-yard. I’ve been around the world a lot as an amateur and fought overseas as a professional but this will be a new experience in terms of being the headline act in someone else’s ‘‘home’’.
I see it as a role reversal where everyone is cheering for him and not me. I have to use the crowd as extra drive and motivation to go out there and smash him in front of his home crew and home crowd.
I’m sure cousin Tyson Fury will be there and his larger than life I plan to give him a belated present he won’t forget. persona will have the crowd pumped. They call Tyson the Gypsy King. That makes Hughie the Gypsy Prince, but I’m going to make sure he won’t be ascending to the WBO throne where his mentor once sat.
I’m pretty confident there will also be a fair bit of Kiwi support in the crowd, there are plenty of New Zealanders over here.
My parents, brother and a few close friends arrive in London this weekend and it will be great to see them. We head north on Wednesday for the final countdown.
It feels like this fight has taken up pretty much the whole year for one reason or another. It’s been frustrating but there has been a silver lining to my relative inactivity. Usually I would have had three or four fights by now but the delay has allowed me time to get over some injury niggles that my previous busy schedule never allowed. So I feel like it’s a blessing in disguise.
Watch out Hughie, you now have someone in front of you who’s at 100 per cent.
When the first fight was scheduled for May, I wasn’t at my peak. But now you’re going to get the full noise, the full beating.