Anthony Yigit (18-0-1, 7 KOs) says he is ready to write his name in Swedish boxing history on Saturday night when he faces Lenny Daws (30-4-2, 11 KOs) for the European Super Lightweight title at the Westcroft Leisure Centre in Carshalton, London.
The 25 year-old from Stockholm can become the first Swedish fighter to claim the European crown since heavyweight Anders Eklund in 1987, but will face tough opposition from Daws, who will be making a third attempt at the title following controversial defeats to Ruben Nieto and Michele Di Rocco.
The fight was initially scheduled to take place on December 17 but was postponed after Daws injured his back in training, and despite his initial disappointment, Yigit believes he has benefitted from the delay.
‘’Of course, I was disappointed when I found out the fight was going to be postponed,’’ said Yigit. ‘’It was just a week before, and in my mind, I was already in battle mode, so I had to wind down and get back into training mode, but now, I feel better than ever.
‘’I believe the more you train, the more you learn, and that's what I've been doing so it’s turned out well for me. It would've been nice to finish the year with the European title but beginning the New Year with it sounds even better!’’
Yigit has made good use of this additional time. The Swedish southpaw has just returned from a training camp in the French mountains where he has put through his paces by coach CJ Hussein.
‘’It’s good to get away from all the distractions back home and focus solely on boxing,’’ he says. ‘'In France we’ve had great facilities, top class sparring and I’ve been surrounded by people who are there to help me and want me to succeed.
‘’I always train as if I'm fighting for the World title, but this time I can honestly say, that I’ve had the best and hardest training camp yet, and I believe that's what's going to make the difference on Saturday night!’’
Despite fighting in his opponent’s backyard, Yigit is confident he can upset the local fighter and bring the belt home to Stockholm, where he hopes to make his first title defence later this year.
‘’Daws is an experienced fighter, but we have a game plan ready and we’re sure it’s going to give us the win,’’ he says. ‘’This is a big opportunity for me, and a chance to write my name in Swedish boxing history. To win the title and then to defend it at home in Stockholm would be a dream come true.
‘’There’s not been a European title fight in Sweden since 1966, so that would be extra special, and I would love to fight in front of my home fans at the Globen, but for now, all my focus is on beating Daws and winning the title on Saturday night.’’