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Lee wants GGG clash: “I can punch as hard if not harder than him”

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Former WBO champion Andy Lee feels that he is the middleweight with the best chance of defeating Kazakh king Gennady Golovkin [36(33)-0]

WBC, WBA, and IBF ruler Golovkin stopped IBF welterweight champ Kell Brook on Saturday night in London via fifth round knockout. It was far from a vintage performance from Golovkin, and Brook gave the Asian more trouble than most, but it was still a comfortable win for GGG.

With many middleweights unwilling to take on Golovkin, although Billy Joe Saunders has stated his willingness recently, Limerick’s Lee [34(24)-3(2)-1] believes that he is the man with the tools to beat the fearsome Kazakh.

Speaking last night on Newstalk 106FM’s Off The Ball, Lee outlined how “I can ask a lot of questions of him that nobody else can ask of him in our division.”

“I’m a 6’2″ southpaw, I can punch as hard if not harder than him.”

“If you look at our records, I have a lot more one-punch KOs than he has. His stoppages come from an accumulation of punches.”

32 year old Lee is desperate to fight the pound-for-pound-rated puncher, whom he had previously agreed to box in April 2014 before the death of Golovkin’s father forced the postponement of the bout. Many would view Lee’s aspirations and confidence with skepticism, and the Castleconnell boxer admits that “people might think I’m crazy but while he’s out there and he’s in my division where I was champion.”

“I feel like I have to fight him. I want to get in there and see what he has and see how good he actually is.”

The Adam Booth-trained Irishman stresses that it is glory and personal redemption that motivates him, rather than a payday, and explained that “I could walk away now, I’m satisfied with what I achieved from boxing. I’ve done enough to secure myself for the next few years financially.”

“But the way the Billy Joe Saunders fight ended leaves a little bad taste in my mouth and I’m still hungry.”

“While I can I’m gonna go for it. It would be a great story to go and claim the title.”

Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie