British boxer Liam Walsh takes on Floyd Mayweather’s protégé Gervonta Davis in an IBF super featherweight world championship clash at the Copperbox Arena in Stratford on Saturday.
Though he is a 3/1 betting underdog, the unbeaten 31-year-old believes he has a master plan to dismantle Davis on fight night.
“Davis has great speed and power,” Walsh told Business Insider at a preview event this week. “He’s physically strong and very, very fast. Speed is undeniably his greatest asset.”
He added: “But timing beats speed. So I have to be smart in the ring. I’ve also seen him in the flesh a few times and now I know I’m taller and have a longer reach [distance from fingertip to armpit]. This means if I manage the distance and manage the tempo, I control the fight.”
Unbeaten in 21 fights, Walsh has passed every examination so far in his career, but he now faces a step-up in class as he takes on a fighter who Mayweather believes is the future of boxing.
Davis has a powerful knockout record and has flattened 16 of his 17 opponents to date. Walsh has previously engaged in scrappy rucks but claims he has matured in age and will use brains rather than brawn on Saturday.
“I’ve improved a lot, matured, and I’m more experienced. I’m a better fighter now than at any time in the past. I used to pressure opponents and want to stop them, going crazy, but now I’m a technically a lot better.”
Walsh believes that, despite the hype, it is unclear just how good Davis is. “I assume he’s made of tough stuff as he’s from a rough background [but] psychologically, we don’t know yet. I just know I cannot allow him to get his punches off.”
Mayweather has been ever-present throughout the promotion of this fight and has undoubtedly helped boost the event’s profile but Walsh is unfazed by his opponent’s mentor and promoter.
“Mayweather has not distracted me at all,” Walsh said. “It’s just like any other promotion for me.
“I haven’t spoken to him too much but I said hello to him and he said hello back. I’m not in awe of him as a man but I cannot deny that I respect his achievements.”
More from Alan Dawson:
- Former UFC fighter Rory MacDonald dominates Paul Daley in his debut Bellator bout
- Floyd Mayweather’s protégé Gervonta Davis tells us what he’s learnt from one of the greatest boxers ever
- The man who defeated Conor McGregor should deflect to UFC’s rival promoter, according to cage fighter Paul Daley
- Kimbo Slice’s son tells us what he learned from his legendary street-fighter father
- Conor McGregor urges Floyd Mayweather’s adviser to get a fight deal done
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