By James Blears
Saul Canelo Alvarez and Ryan Rhodes looked ripped, relaxed and comfortably as they made the weight prior to their WBC Super Welterweight Championship clash on the young lion's home pride turf at the VFG Arena in Tlajomulco, Jalisco.
At the weigh in Hotel Riu in Guadalajara City, Canelo was 153.2 pounds, while Ryan was a whisper lighter at 152.8 pounds.
Both fighters gave each other a friendly pat on the back of the ribcage, as a mark of respect prior to the anticipated war to come.
Canelo's Manager Jose Chepo Reynoso was confident. He said: "We are totally prepared to twelve or even fifteen rounds. But by the fourth or fifth round Canelo will completely dominate. If there's a knockout, then all the better!"
Coming into the lion's den doesn't seemed to overly phased Ryan, who's been resting, relaxing and re-charging his batteries for the last two days. Showing his Sheffield steel he stressed: "I'm here to win. I'm not here to be just an opponent, make up the numbers or lose. Everyone in England knows I'm going to win. I'm going to be the new WBC Champion.
"At the weigh in, he patted me first, which is a mark of respect, so I patted him back. I respect him as a fighter and a person, but I've come over here to do a job."
John H. Stracey who came to Mexico City, way back in December 1975 and got up off the canvas in the first round to defeat the legendary Jose Npolis, has already sent Ryan a good luck message via Sky TV, and Ryan says this just goes to show the seeming improbable has, can and will be done.
Ryan also says that experience will triumph over youth. He explained: "I remember when I was 21-years-old making a lot of mistakes, and Alvarez makes a lot of mistakes. I've got the experience and maturity on my side and it's going to be a massive advantage in this fight. I'm going to do everything I can to make it as arkward and difficult night as possible for Canelo."
Ryan also says winning will fulfil his lifelong ambiton. He confided: "It was my childhood dream since when I started in boxing at six years old. I'm 34-year-old, so do the math and think how many dreams that is.
"Oscar De La Hoya is tipping Canelo to be a superstar, and at this stage of my career, I wouldn't have it any other way. Fighting a superstar in Mexico, in his home town for the WBC World title. I relish it! I've got a few tricks up my sleeve. I'm a right handed southpaw and I can knock him out with either hand."