By Kevin Francis, courtesy of The Daily Star
ADNAN AMAR trains at the same Sheffield gym where Prince Naseem Hamed honed his talent under Brendan Ingle.
Now Amar has added a touch of Hamed-like showmanship to his approach – and his growing army of fans love it.
Amar meets Lee Purdy for the vacant English welterweight title at the Motorpoint Arena in Sheffield on March 17.
The bout is on the undercard of the Kell Brook-Matthew Hatton welterweight contest and Amar, 29, has promised to put on a crowd-pleasing performance.
The Nottingham-born fighter said: “I’m bringing a bit of Naz’s style back, even down to the flip over the ropes I do.
“It’s nice to do something different and add a little bit of style to the show. I like keeping the spectators happy.
“I’ve got a great fan base in Sheffield and also in the Asian community in the UK. My support is building all the time.
As long as I get some TV exposure, I think it won’t be long before Amir Khan’s huge number of fans start noticing me and get behind me too.
“It’s a big opportunity on a big stage – I’ve got an exciting crowd-pleasing style and I think that I belong boxing in front of huge audiences.
“I will rise to the occasion on March 17 and it’s going to be a really important night for my career. I don’t aim to waste the chance.”
The clash with Purdy, 24, is one that Amar believes the fans will be able to get their teeth into and he is looking forward to taking on the Essex man.
He said: “I’ve seen Lee box a few times now.
“I like to watch him fight, he’s got an all-action style and he’s a good boxer. I’ve got a lot of respect for him and that’s why I’ve really pushed myself in training.
“Everybody has been saying that it should be a great fight as our styles will gel nicely and I agree with that.
“He likes to come forward and mix it up and I am like the lion tamer, controlling the pace.
“Hopefully that will play into my hands and all the work will pay off.
“I’ve sparred very hard with Kell, who is the best welterweight in the country, and that has really been good for me. I feel that I’ll be ready for Purdy’s style.
“There’s such a variety in the gym here and I’ve learnt so much in my nine years with the Ingles, with the amount of time I’ve spent in the gym with Kell and with Junior Witter and all the other boys here and in other gyms too.
“I watch everybody and I think it’s crucial to do so as you can learn something from everybody, all over the world.”