The Dublin heavyweight boxes on the Ginley Promotions ‘Danger at The Devenish’ bill in Belfast on Saturday as he begins his journey down in weight.
Following a first career loss and a realisation that he will be outsized by most of his rivals, Turner is committed to making his way down to cruiserweight.
It’s a substantial undertaking for Big Sexy who two years ago was around 270lbs – five stone off the 200lbs cruiserweight limit. He would get down to around 255lbs but since losing to Kamil Sokolowski in April he has melted off another stone.
There is a long way to go no doubt, but the Shankill puncher is feeling like a changed man at the moment
“I am in the best shape I have ever been in my life,” he told Irish-Boxing.com.
“I am delighted and I am flying. I am doing my runs and sprints in the morning which I never done -even if I was letting on!”
“I owe a big thanks to Pete Taylor, he is there for every session. He has me on a diet plan and has me doing the weights and that.”
Losing around 40lbs will be tough for the broad Dubliner, but he has taken some inspiration from a fighter not too far from home.
“If Mike Perez can do it, why can’t I?” states Turner. “He was 20 stone at his heaviest so I can do it.”
“Realistically if I get to the top end of the heavyweight scene you’re looking at fighting lads that are between 6’5″ and 6’7″. I know I could be competitive against them but they have so much of an advantage – and getting wins in close fights or evenly matched ones would be hard.”
“I had a chat with my manager and said we need to make a plan. So we decided to work down to the cruiser and keep fighting at heavy in the meantime.”
“I think I would be a big force at cruiser especially if I keep the power. Look at Ireland, Tommy McCarthy is number one, but I don’t think anyone in the country would be beat me.”
“The last time I was cruiserweight I was probably Boy 1 so there is a bit of the unknown, but I think I’d keep my power and if I did I could do serious damage down there.”.
It definitely will be a long-term journey for Turner, and he has plenty of plans up until he hits the magic 200 number.
The 26 year old outlined how “I am working my way down now. I wouldn’t mind getting an Irish title at heavy on the way down.”
“We will see how close we are to it after Christmas and see if we are on the plan. I hope to have three fights before Christmas at heavy. Hopefully one is a big fight.”
Saturday was initially due to be a rematch with Sokolowski, but the Pole would pull out. A strong opponent has been brought in to replace him though in Cameroonian Olympian and Commonwealth bronze medalist Blaise Mendouo [3(0)-4(1)].
The Manchester-based African gave top English cruisers Sam Hyde and Simon Vallily scares, and is the only man to have brought Lawrence Okolie the distance.
Turner is feeling good as the weight continues to fall off him and is hoping to give a statement of intent on the card.
The former Elite Senior champion described how “I am banging harder now being this light. It’s the speed and the ones you don’t see rather that big hammer lump. I am taking people apart in sparring so I am excited about going down.”
Regardless of what weight this weekend I just can’t wait to get in the ring. I’ll show people I am back and there is no messing anymore.”
“I am serious about doing well. No more Dominos before a fight!”