Nathan Cleverly Eager To Impress, Knock Kuziemski Silly
Nathan Cleverly is eager to put on a show tonight after learning his WBO light-heavyweight title defence against Aleksy Kuziemski will be televised on the big screen in New York's Times Square.
Cleverly was upgraded from 'interim' champion to full title holder this week and makes the first defence of his belt at the O2 Arena in London.
However, he already has one eye on "defining" high-profile fights against the likes of Bernard Hopkins, Jean Pascal, Chad Dawson and Carl Froch and knows he must build his profile if he is to secure them.
American broadcaster Epix is screening the fight Stateside with extra publicity garnered by showing it on the huge screen in one of the world's busiest tourist hotspots.
"I've got to put on a show," Cleverly told Press Association Sport. "The fact it is being beamed out in Times Square is interesting, it adds extra spice to the fight.
"It's a chance to get into the American market and make a statement over there. It would be good to win and put on a performance."
Cleverly had been set to challenge Juergen Braehmer for the WBO title but the German pulled out, only for the WBO to strip him and make Cleverly champion.
Promoter Frank Warren then brought in Cleverly's domestic rival Tony Bellew to challenge the new champion in an exciting all-British scrap before problems making the weight forced the Liverpudlian out.
Mathematics graduate Cleverly (21-0, 10KOs) will therefore face little-known Kuziemski (21-2, 5KOs) and Welshman admitted: "It (maths) is easier, I tell you - there are less problems!
"This is boxing, though, I've seen it all before and had it done to me before. So here we are again.
"I'll be fine, I'll be focused and get on with business."
Germany-based Pole Kuziemski made the weight easily yesterday and revealed afterwards he had been training for a fortnight anyway.
"I've been working very hard in the last two weeks for a fight," he said.
"Boxing is boxing, we can't say how the fight will go tonight but it's a dream, I'm excited.
"Lennox Lewis was a role model for me, he was a very intelligent boxer and I try to fight the same way.
"I think it could go the full 12-round distance tonight. We'll see."
The main attraction tonight will be the grudge match between 2008 Olympic gold medalist James DeGale and former amateur stablemate George Groves, with the British and Commonwealth super-middleweight titles at stake.
Groves won their only meeting in the unpaid ranks in 2005 en route to his ABA championship triumph and DeGale is relishing his shot at revenge.
The 25-year-old told Press Association Sport: "I've waited six years for this.
"I was robbed six years ago and this is the story. It all adds up. He beat me as an amateur - well, 'beat me' in inverted commas - but I went to the Olympic Games for our country and won a gold medal.
"Now we're both professionals so let's see who is the best now."