“Anyone who is ahead of me in the rankings, to be honest. I don’t want to fight plumbers and anyone outside the top 20, to be honest. I understand if I’m left out long enough, I might need a warm up, but after that, everyone has to be ranked above me. I want to know how far I can go. I give this game everything. It’s taken over my whole life and I want to know how good I really am because right now, I’ve only shown 65%,” stated light heavyweight Tony Bellew, who talked about his future plans and much more.
ON THE DANNY MCINTOSH PERFORMANCE
SS:Firstly great performance against Danny McIntosh, the variety of your work was excellent against McIntosh, never really allowed him to assert him self, What pleased you most with your performance?
TB: Yes I was happy enough, I made mistakes but it can never be perfect to be honest, I’m my own worst critic so there is always room for improvement, I feel all the improvement I’ve shown in the last 3 fights is all down to my team.. Mick, Mark, Gary and Dave.
SS:Against Cleverly, the rounds where you used your jab, you won comfortably, was that in your mind going into the McIntosh fight to sustain the solid jab and control from distance?
TB:I smashed my right hand in the second round and he knows I did! I couldn’t hit him with the same power as I did in the second round! I rocked him in the second and he knows I did! Had my hand held up then I believe he would of only lasted 6 rounds! I jabbed as much as I did because I basically boxed with 1 hand.
WHAT IS NEXT?
SS:With Chad Dawson moving down to fight Andre Ward, with Cloud, Cleverly and Shumenov in possession of the world titles, which avenue to a world title interests you most?
TB: I’ve dreamed of one day being a world champion! I believe I am a world champion without a belt! All them names above interest me, my plan is becoming somebody’s mandatory challenger! I don’t want any handouts, I want to do it properly.
SS: Nathan Cleverly has come out and said he wants the rematch with you, are there any on going negotiations to get that rematch on?
TB:It’s alright him saying that on twitter but the FACTS are, I begged for a rematch and was told “He does not want it” let me also say I have never ever once been made an official offer for the rematch! I’ve never even been called regarding it so your hearing it from me! It’s all lies!
SS: If Nathan Cleverly is not in the immediate future? what is next for Tony Bellew?
TB: Anyone who is ahead of me in the rankings to be honest, I don’t want to fight plumbers and anyone outside the top 20 to be honest, I understand if I’m left out long enough I might need a warm up but after that everyone has to be ranked above me! I want to know how far I can go! I give this game everything! It’s taken over my whole life and I want to know how good I really am because right now I’ve only shown 65%.
PREPARING FOR A FIGHT
SS: I’ve spoken with a number of British boxers past and present recently about their preparations for fights. Surprisingly a lot are not keen on sparring too much before a fight, how important is sparring for yourself and what is the main benefits you get of it?
TB: Timing and general toughness and your facial muscles only strengthen through sparring, I usually do somewhere between 100-120 rounds for each camp! Sparring is a big part of camp and you can’t be great everyday so you have to be prepared to take the good with the bad in my opinion.. As long as your trying things and feeling fit then it’s all good in my opinion..
SS:Do you spend time watching your opponents on tape?
TB:Not really, a little bit but I mainly leave it with my team! I never studied McIntosh, I left that to my team, I watched him a bit but I usually proper study them but last time I never and I felt better for it to be honest..
SS: One thing I have always been impressed with is your ability to generate interest in fights. We see the likes of Floyd Mayweather, David Haye, put on a camera show to sell fights. We always seem to get fireworks before a Tony Bellew fight, do you ever attend press conferences with a plan to unsettle your opponent because it seems as though it just comes natural and heat of the moment full blooded passion?
TB: I’ve never planned a press conference in my life, I just turn up and it is what it is, I try to be respectful but sometimes things get out of hand, I’ll say this, I’ve learnt my lessons and I’m prepared for anything at anytime And that’s the truth.
SS:After Kell Brook’s resilient performance, what do you see for Kell over the next 12 months?
TB:I see him being world champion and creating himself a legacy! He’s a fantastic fighter who providing he learns from mistakes can really be a British legend.
SS:Amir Khan in action this weekend, talks of Floyd Mayweather later in the year do you think Amir can come through Garcia and is he ready for the test of Floyd Mayweather?
TB: He’ll beat Garcia as he’s technically far too good for him, as long as he keeps the fight at distance then it’s a nice night’s work! He must be careful of Garcia’s left hook! As for Mayweather?? I don’t see any fighter under 160lbs being able to touch Mayweather to be honest, he’s the best I’ve personally ever witnessed.
SS:The much anticipated bout between Haye and Chisora, who you tipping in this one?
TB: It’s a mismatch and I see David knocking him out whenever he see’s fit! I mean common, David and Del are on different levels! One is world class and the other is domestic level in my opinion, Del had to go to the well to beat Sexton! Haye is a serious puncher and you can’t miss Del.
SS: We seen you in the front row jumping around at the Froch vs Bute fight. The rematch is set for next year, and Carl has announced his return to the ring later this year, would that interest you if there can be a weight compromise?
TB:No, it would have to be life changing money! He’s a friend and someone I speak to on a regular basis.. I’m a fan of Carl Froch, I have enough challengers in my own weight classes and Carl is a 12st fighter who does not struggle with his weight..
SS:Tyson Fury is now being mentioned as a challenger for Wladimir Klitschko, In my opinion the man from the red half of your city David Price is looking far more equipped if any to step in to the world title picture, what are your thoughts on both guys title chances in the next 12 months?
TB:Fury has improved you have to say that, he’s looked exceptional on his last few fights but lets put things into perspective, John McDermott gave him serious problems and Pricey went in an demolished him inside a round! If you look at both there skills then for me it’s no comparison, David Price is technically the best heavyweight in the world bar the Klitschko’s! He has everything! The jab, the power, the speed! He’s an immense athlete too! Time will prove me right believe me.. Pricey is the heir to the Klitschko’s throne
SS: I have to ask you this being an avid Evertonian, what do you predict for the coming season. With me being an Aston Villa fan, I hope you don’t have a good start since we playing you second game of the season lol.
Lol, I’ve been in training today and all the lads are looking great so I’m hoping we just get a win as soon as possible! It’s gonna be tough against UTD because they’re out to prove a point after what their neighbors done to them! However I feel on our day we can beat anyone in the Premiership, its a great league and very unpredictable! He is hoping to have a good start mate.
I would like to thank Tony Bellew for his time and co-operation for the interview, and FightHype UK greatly appreciate his efforts and wish him all the best.
CHECK OUT: DESTINED FOR SUCCESS: TONY BELLEW
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