By Ben Jacobs
Former world champion Gabriel Campillo spoke to BoxingScene from Madrid before leaving early Sunday morning for Chicago. Campillo squares off with Poland´s Andrzej Fonfara in an IBF eliminator which takes place at US Cellular Field, live on ESPN Friday Night Fights.
“Without going over the top I´m feeling as good as ever. We´ll see on fight night how things go but I really feel great about this fight. I just have two kilos to lose this week.
“Last time [against Sergey Kovalev], I arrived the day before the weigh-in. A whole set of circumstances meant it was almost impossible to come out victorious but this time things are a lot better.
“I’ve been studying Fonfara for two months, every step, every movement, blow by blow. It’s a huge lack of responsibility when some fighters say they don’t watch video of their opponents, that is, if they’re telling the truth. Floyd Mayweather is the only exception, the rest of us are mere mortals!”
Campillo lost a split decision in February 2012 against then IBF champion Tavoris Cloud, however most observers felt the Spaniard deserved the win. He appeared to hurt Cloud on more than one occasion but was unable to end the fight early. As a consequence, the 34-year-old confirmed that power is something he has been focusing on during his latest training camp.
“I’ve been working on my punching power. I’d say it’s almost the most important thing that we’ve been working on. We’ve worked on different things than before. We were doing good things in the past but didn’t always get the results we wanted, so we hired a strength and conditioning coach who has done a very precise job and I hope I’ll see the results on Friday.
“Kovalev knew very well that I’m a slow starter and he took advantage of it so this time we’ve tried to correct that. If not start very strong then at least be more active and more focused than in prior fights.”
After losing a controversial decision to Beibut Shumenov for the WBA version of the light-heavyweight title, Campillo found himself somewhat on the sidelines before the opportunity to fight Cloud came about. This time a big chance has arrived quicker, which has served to fire the Madrid man up even more.
“After the loss to Kovalev I thought it would take me a long time to get back to this kind of level, close to fighting for a world title. So when I found out, it gave me even more motivation.”Tags: Andrzej Fonfara , Gabriel Campillo