Jay Byrne [4(1)-1(0)] is adamant that he will punish Josh Kelly for daring to look past him, and will knock out the vaunted debutant in Scotland tomorrow night.
Most fighters rejoice when they feel a future foe is overlooking the challenge they bring as indicates a lax approach to the upcoming fight.
However, Byrne, who fights the former Olympian on Ricky Burns v Julius Indongo’s WBA-IBF light welterweight unification bout in Glasgow, is nothing short of ‘fuming’ upon hearing that Kelly has another date in the pipeline.
The Sunderland boxer is in line to fight on the on the undercard of the Anthony Joshua v Wladimir Klitschko heavyweight title clash at Wembley Stadium on April 29th despite having a six-round light middleweight fight with Byrne to negotiate first.
The close proximity of the two dates would suggest that, not only are Matchroom one hundred percent confident that Kelly wins tomorrow, but they can’t even foresee an overly-exerting or damaging bout for the English youngster.
I’ve watched Josh and his footwork and hand speed stands out, as well as excellent use of the ring and I expect a very slippery and tricky customer.”
“However, he ain’t been tested in a pro ring, he ain’t done six rounds in competition and has been named on the Joshua-Klitschko card already which has me fuming!”
“My aim is to shatter his little plans by knocking him out.”
It’s a second successive Sky Sports fight for ‘The Negotiator’ who took on middleweight starlet Felix Cash at the York Hall.
This time round however, Byrne is feeling far more confident, with weight, preparation, and experience all playing a part.
Indeed, comparing his words here to his talk before the Cash clash makes for a stark contrast.
The Dublin welterweight explained how “camp went great and I feel confident.”
“Last time I was questioning myself all the way up to the fight and the nerves were shattering me.”
“This time I’m not bad at all, I’m more relaxed and training has gone really well. The whole Sky thing the last time was so big to me and the fact I was on TV on a Matchroom show – and then had all the worries of fighting two weights higher.”
“This time round, I’m eating properly every day, taking in lots of fluids and basically fighting at my walking weight.
“I’m ready for a war and my fitness is always ready.”
Photo Credit: Laszlo Geczo Photography