Ene-Pur­cell ea­ger to de­throne King Afa

The Chronicle - - SPORT -

BOX­ING: Toowoomba heavy­weight Her­man Ene-Pur­cell con­tin­ues his ti­tle push when he takes on New Zealand-based Samoan King Afa Tatupu at Ru­mours In­ter­na­tional on March 11.

King Afa is a for­mer New Zealand heavy­weight cham­pion — los­ing that belt to cur­rent world cham­pion Joseph Parker.

“King Afa gave Joseph Parker a real test,” Ene-Pur­cell’s man­ager Brendon Smith said.

“Whilst Parker recorded a knock-out vic­tory in the sec­ond round, he had to work hard for his win and King Afa ac­tu­ally cut Parker in the open­ing round.

“King Afa is a march for­ward fighter who throws a lot of punches and is all ac­tion which is ev­i­denced in the footage of his bout with Parker.

“The mere fact he was in the same ring as Parker speaks vol­umes of the fighter he is.

“It took a world cham­pion to de­throne him of his na­tional ti­tle.”

It looms as an­other sig­nif­i­cant chal­lenge for Ene-Pur­cell who capped off a busy 2016 with four wins from five bouts in­clud­ing wins in New Zealand and China.

He proved he’s on track

I need to win this fight.

— Her­man Ene-Pur­cell

for an Aus­tralian ti­tle shot de­feat­ing Justin White­head in Oc­to­ber, who at the time was ranked num­ber two by the ANBF.

Ene-Pur­cell’s per­for­mances have seen him move to num­ber five in the ANBF rat­ings, num­ber three in the OPBF rank­ings and he qual­i­fied for the World Youth ti­tle.

“2016 was very re­ward­ing and we’re now in a good po­si­tion to chal­lenge for some ti­tles in 2017,” Ene-Pur­cell said.

“But I need to keep build­ing in 2017 and it starts with King Afa. If I want to win ti­tles these are the fights I need to win.

“There is also plenty of Samoan pride on the line in this one. King Afa is a parochial Samoan. So am I.

“There will be a deep re­spect for each other, but a burn­ing de­sire to score a vic­tory. There’s a lot at stake here.”

“I need to win this fight.”

PHOTO: KEVIN FARMER

TAKE THAT: Her­man Ene-Pur­cell on the at­tack against Moses Havea at Ru­mours In­ter­na­tional.

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