Linus Udofia and Denzel Bentley both made their intentions perfectly clear as they went head to head at the final press conference on Wednesday ahead of their highly-anticipated showdown this week.
The two men clash for the vacant British middleweight title on a Wasserman Boxing show at the Indigo at The O2 in London on Friday, which will be broadcast live on Channel 5.
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A stacked card also sees Josh Kelly make his return against Xhuljo Vrenozi, Harlem Eubank go up against Sean Dodd, and Brad Pauls collide with Ryan Kelly. The fighters spoke in front of the media at the final press conference, as they all shared their thoughts ahead of returning to the ring.
Udofia said: “I knew I was fighting Bentley. The logical choice for the board was Bentley, and I knew he wouldn’t say no to it. I knew it would always be him. I know it’s a big fight without going on social media.
"I’ve seen the reaction I’ve been getting everywhere I’ve gone – people coming up to me and saying it is a massive fight, or mentioning the advert on Channel 5. I know how big this fight is without all the noise that comes with it
Bentley said: "He’s been in title fights too, so I’m not counting on that. I always knew we were in line to meet each other at some point because he kept excelling and I kept excelling. It’s not long now until we get to find out who’s the better fighter.”
Kelly said: “I feel refreshed. I’ve been in the gym the whole time I’ve been out. I’ve got a smile on my face, I’m going to perform on Friday and I’m going to enjoy it; that’s the main thing. It’s going to be a hard nights work for my opponent.
“I feel strong, I feel fit, and I feel like this is the move for me. It’s going to show on Friday. There are levels in this sport, and when that first bell goes, he knows he’ll be swimming in deep water and it’ll be too much.”
Eubank said: "This is exactly what I wanted. This is a Sean ‘Masher’ Dodd who has been through hardship and come through the other side. This is a man with a stronger mindset, and I’m prepared for the best version of Sean ‘Masher’ Dodd come Friday. I believe that is what he will be.
“Sean mentioned that I’m a fighter that has been invested in, but I don’t think that’s me. I’m a fighter who has kicked down the doors himself, taken the opportunities, and I’m here based on merit and on my performances.
“I’m physically and mentally prepared and I’m excited to put on a display come Friday night in the true fashion by showing how I got here and where I’m going in the future."
Dodd said: “I know what I’m up against with Harlem, more than you realise. These past couple of years have been leading to this opportunity now.
"When I got this opportunity, I realised THIS is the platform. Lets go back into boxing and enjoy it. Lets show people, and ourselves, what we’ve achieved these past couple of years. The years of experience in fighting, and the past two years of pain and trauma and graft; lets put them two together and put it out there on Friday, Live on Channel 5.”
Kelly said: “I’ve found my weight now, and I’m looking forward to some big fights at middleweight. I’m feeling good,” said Kelly.
“The lights, the dressing rooms, it’s a big feeling going into these fights. I’ve got the experience of fighting on a few different platforms, and It’s a great feeling fighting on a Wasserman card as well. I appreciate the opportunity and I’m ready to go Friday night."
Pauls said: “It's a massive night for our gym. We’ve taken it to a different level this training camp. I’ve hit personal bests in every area of my training, and I’ve taken this fight so seriously. Knowing Linus has got the biggest night of his life as well, we’ve pushed each other and it is good to have that inside the gym. We’re in a very good position, and it is a big night for us.
“I’ve asked to be challenged, so let us see how good I am,” continued Pauls. “I’m more than capable, I’m very confident, and I’m more than prepared. I feel like me at 100% beats Ryan at 100%.”