Kieran Molloy [1(1)-0] goes into his American debut inspired by the former heavyweight champion of the world.
The Galway fighter fights for just the second time as a pro on the undercard of the eagerly anticipated WBC, WBA, WBO three-belt unification showdown between Artur Beterbiev and Joe Smith at the Hulu Theater of Madison Square Garden on Saturday.
The aggressive southpaw takes on Jonathan Ryan Burrs [4(1)-5(1)] over four rounds on the Top Rank and Star Boxing ESPN broadcast card – and goes into his big Big Apple introduction with words of advice from Anthony Joshua ringing in his ear.
The 23-year-old has trained alongside the former unified heavyweight world champ in the lead-up to this clash and claims he has really benefited from having his Angel Fernandez stablemate around of late.
It’s said Joshua has taken a shine to the Top Rank and Conlan Boxing starlet and is not averse to an advice packed sit down and chat.
Molloy also points out the Olympic gold medal winner’s actions speak louder than words on occasion and he draws inspiration from seeing how hungry someone, who has achieved soo much, remains.
“I was about three or four weeks into my first training camp when Josh came in and since he came in the buzz in the gym just go better. There is a great atmosphere and to be training alongside the heavyweight champion of the world there is not much better than that,” he tells Seconds Out.
“It motivates me a lot because I know how hard he works to win his belts back. He sees us on the way up and he can give us bits of advice. Just training alongside him is a great experience.”
Reports suggest Joshua has a lot of time for the EU Championship bronze medal winner, the always reserved prospect avoided going into too much detail but did admit he has sought advice from the big Brit.
“It’s always good to pick his brain a bit. I’m learning lots from him all the time. It’s the same with Richard [Riakporhe] and Frazer [Clarke] they always give me advice. I suppose I’m that bit younger than them so they can tell me how to do things.”
Molloy faces what, on paper, looks like a tough fight tomorrow night, particularly for someone competing just for the second time.
Burrs has four wins to his name and has only been stopped once in his five defeats. The American looks capable of asking questions in what should be a good learning fight.
At this stage the light middleweight, who is out again in Belfast on August 6, is content with that approach, stressing he isn’t in any kind of hurry.
I just want to stay active while taking the right fights at the right time. I’ve good matchmakers in place so I think I’ll be guided correctly. I’m young just 23 so it’s just baby steps for now and keep improving.