Massive money fights could await Patrick Hyland if he becomes Ireland’s first featherweight World champion since Barry McGuigan, but standing between ‘Pajo’ and cashing in is a Pound or Pound star, according to his coach.
Pascall Collins is a Gary Russell Jr fan and believes the featherweight WBC World champion is among the top 20 fighters in the World at present.
The coach, who works in the Jobstown native’s corner for the first time in Foxwoods this coming Saturday night, has long been an admirer of Russell Jr and has labeled the American ‘a class act’ ahead of his charges massive title tilt.
“I’ve seen a lot of Russell even before the Pajo fight was made. I like him. He is a small little guy but he has dynamite in both hands, great movement, good engine- I have to say I like him. He is a class act and he is in the top 20 Pound for Pound fighters in the World in my opinion,” Collins told Irish-boxing.com.
Admitting Russell’s class isn’t a premature admission of defeat, however. Collins confident the 32 year old Tallaght man has the ability to cause an upset and claims his charge is both motivated and improved.
Collins, who is always respectful toward opponents, claims ‘The Punisher’ is a test for anyone even the World elite and is excited about the former WBA Interim World title challengers prospect.
“I am excited about this fight and Pajo’s prospects,” he continued.
“I have been working with Pajo for six months I knew a lot about him seeing him here sparring over the years, but I have been even more impressed. Offensively he is a great fighter, he is settling down on his punches a lot more now, but it is his defense that has improved most. His defense is getting so much better and that to his arsenal and he is a test for anyone,” he continued before stressing even the greatest of all time have suffered defeats over the years.
“Russell is a class fighter, but you put that bit of pressure on him he doesn’t like it. Put that bit of pressure on Russell in a way where you stay out of range at the same time and you take him out of his comfort zone. We will give it a good shot.
“How many pound for pound fighters have lost. You will lose sometimes and Pajo has the ability to defeat Russell.”