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‘You don’t believe in your fighter’ – Team Conlan accuse Ben Davidson of having no faith in Leigh Wood

Team Conlan accused controversial coach Ben Davidson of having no faith in his own fighter at a feisty press conference in Nottingham today.

Davidson will man the corner of WBA ‘regular’ champion Leigh Wood [25(15)-2] during his March 12 defence against Belfast’s Michael Conlan [16(8)-0].

Speaking in Nottingham at the first of two press conferences this week, the Conlan brothers claimed the British coach lacked belief in the champion.

Both accused the young trainer of backing Reece Mould to beat Wood when they meet for the British featherweight title in early 2021.

Davidson wasn’t working with the Nottingham fighter ahead of the fight mentioned, a fight Wood won by ninth-round stoppage, but both Michael and Jamie Conlan claim he told people in Sky Sports that Mould would be too good for the fighter he coached to a brilliant win over Xu Can at Fight Camp.

“You didn’t believe he’d win the Reece Mould fight. You don’t believe in your fighter. You believe in his power but you don’t believe in him as a fighter,” Micheal Conlan said.

Jamie Conlan added: “You told people in Sky Reece Mould was going to win. You told Sky Leigh wouldn’t be able to adapt to his style.”

Davidson, who has worked with Tyson Fury and coaches Josh Taylor, denied the claims and said he declared it would be a tough fight for Wood.

It was another offensive move from Team Conlan, who have no issue trying to get under the skin of opponents.

Leigh Wood and Michael Conlan Press Conference to announce their WBA Featherweight World Title fight in Nottingham on 12th March 2022. 19 January 2022 Picture By Mark Robinson. Ben Davison

Wood claims he is aware of the tactic and sees it as a weakness on the challenger’s behalf.

“Social media wise, it seems like he’s got all of Team Conlan trying to rattle me, but it is what it is, I give what I get. He can do what he wants to try and throw me off, but I just see it as a weakness, trying to get any advantage he can – it’s not going to work one bit but do that opposite.

“This fight is everything to me. I don’t need to discredit him, tell him what he wasn’t done or performances, I know what I’m capable of and I know what I can do, I’m going to go out and do it – set up a massive fight, my dream fight at the City Ground.”

Photo Credit Mark Robinson Matchroom

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sports for a living for over 20 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com