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Kal Yafai: Whatever Hearn Throws at Me, I'll Take It

By Kevin Francis, courtesy of The Daily Star

HOT prospect Kal Yafai is a man in a hurry as he bids to become Britain’s best bantamweight.

Yafai has seven straight wins as a pro and Birmingham’s rising star is aiming to land the British title within the next 12 months.

His latest win came when Mexican opponent Gonzalo Garcia failed to come out for the fifth round last week and he is now being lined up for a busy year.

He has already been pencilled in for a possible appearance at Liverpool’s Echo Arena on March 30 and could also figure on the undercard of the Carl Froch-Mikkel Kessler clash in London on May 25.

The 23-year-old said: “I’m up there with the best in the country and I’m sure the best bantamweights know that and are keeping an eye on me.

“Maybe, in my last fight, they saw that they could catch me and maybe expose something – but that’s not going to happen.

“Whatever my promoter Eddie Hearn throws at me I’ll take it. Being active is very important and hopefully the title fights will come.

“I just need to take my time a bit more, work off my jab and tighten up my defence – but that’ll come.”

Yafai joined the paid ranks last July after a stellar amateur career laden with titles and an appearance in the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

Now, with six stoppage wins in his first seven pro fights, he is being tipped for the top.

Yafai admits he’s taken himself by surprise by how quickly he has become established in the pro ranks.

He said: “I knew my first year would be successful but not as successful as it was.

“I have shown people a lot of skill and power.”

Hearn has promised to make him a star and turn his talent into titles.

Yafai added: “I just do what I am doing and what I am told to do. In 12 months I see myself being a British champ, maybe even European. This year is very important.

“Last year was my first six months and was my learning curve.

“I think this year we’ll be looking at titles, collecting titles, keeping them and finding my way.

“Hopefully, I will be looking at world honours to follow in 2014. I have to keep my head down and keep training hard.”

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User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Prince_Pugilist on 01-26-2013

[QUOTE=D-MiZe;12956349]It's just in his last fight he struggled needlessly. Not sure on whether he was injured or not but he didn't show any more sides to his game, he's just walking in and trying to blow 'em away.[/QUOTE] I know…

Comment by D-MiZe on 01-26-2013

[QUOTE=gingerbreadman;12956335]I get what you mean, Billy Joe Saunders-style of conundrum. But he has the tools, and not many people do.[/QUOTE] It's just in his last fight he struggled needlessly. Not sure on whether he was injured or not but he…

Comment by Sparked_26 on 01-26-2013

Difficult to match at the moment I suppose. But he probably could go up to British and European level very quickly. Otherwise he is just knocking people over fairly easily.

Comment by gingerbreadman on 01-26-2013

[QUOTE=D-MiZe;12956329]I heard it's Martin Ward next. I like the look of Yafai but I'm still not completely sold on him.[/QUOTE] I get what you mean, Billy Joe Saunders-style of conundrum. But he has the tools, and not many people do.

Comment by D-MiZe on 01-26-2013

[QUOTE=gingerbreadman;12956270]He should fight Martin Ward next, maybe a couple of eight-rounders after that, and then towards the end of the year target Haskins and then Jamoye for the European title. Yafai is going places.[/QUOTE] I heard it's Martin Ward next.…

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