By James Blears
At the WBC's annual Convention in Las Vegas, giant British heavyweight David Price stands out, not only because of his Scouse accent and his towering height, which loftily competes with the Klitschko brothers. He's also astute, dedicated and good enough to challenge for the world title itself along the road, if he follows the right course. There to guide him in the little and large partnership is promoter Frank Maloney, who's done this all before with Lennox Lewis.
With a fight coming up on January 21st at the Olympia Stadium, Liverpool, against John McDermott, which is the final eliminator for the British and Commenwealth titles held by Tyson Fury, who he defeated as an amateur, David is using the gym facilities of the Mandalay Bay Hotel to maintain optimum condition.
Long before breakfast he's working out and pounding the running machines, although he concedes he's not a runner. The youngest ever ABA super heavyweight at 19 years and 272 days, David has excelled in an amateur career of 85 bouts, which culminated in a bronze medal at the Beijing Olympics, where he captained Britain's Boxing Team.
He said: "In my amateur career, the majority of my fights were for Great Britain at internatinal tournaments. So every time I was fighting, it was against against a national champion, so it was always tough.
He turned pro in January 2009 and has won all eleven of his fights with nine knockouts:
"When I first turned pro, there was a lot of pressure because of my amateur background. But I've come along nice and steady and my last couple of fighs have been pretty impressive wins against dangerous opponents, which has catapulted me into the limelight. I've now got an important year ahead of me."
At 6'8, 250-pounds, and a reach of 81-inches - the 28-year-old David has all of the physical attributes to go all the way. As David put it:
"These are the tools, plus my natural strength, which I'm using to get to where I need to be."
And that place will be in the ring trading punches with Tyson Fury. The inter-city rivalry is very much looming, as David is from Liverpool, while Tyson is from nearby Manchester.
David enthused: "This is the fight I'm looking forward to more than any, and at this stage of my career, it's the biggest fight out there for me. Tyson Fury didn't win an Olympic medal because he couldn't get there as I was in the team. I was better and more experienced than him. As a professional that doesn't really matter because this is a lot different from amateur boxing. But I'm more disciplined and I've got a more disciplined approach."
David who's already sparred with David Haye in preparation for the the Wladimir Klitschko fight, wants to hand out his own challege as Wlad is likely to be around in the next couple of years. First David wants to go and spar with both of them to learn first hand what he'll be up against.
He sees them as - "athletes and fighters, The brothers are role models to up and coming boxers. I think they are brillant."
Articulate, but not flashy David is under no illusions of the tasks lying ahead. He said:
"It's going to take a lot of hard work and dediction, and maybe a bit of luck on the way. It's a matter of getting the right fights at the right time, and it's down to me to win them. Lennox had a lot of fights in the United States in the early and then later part of his career. So Frank and the team are looking into that for next year. I want to get my name out in the United States and showcase my talents, because this is where the big fights and the big money is.
"As long as I can earn enough money to retire comfortably after I've finished boxing - owning my own house, that would do me, because I'm not a very materialistic person. Don't get me wrong, I am in the sport as a job and it's a business. But I'm not greedy."
David wants to continue for another ten years as the thought of getting up and not being able to go to the gym is a grim prospect.
Looking forward he's convinced:
"I've got as much talent as anyone out there, but I've got to get experience, the right sparring and the right fights. It's the whole package that you've got to put together at the right time. Ultimately, that's what will lead me to what the goal is. I'm not saying I can go out tomorrow and be the world champion. But with the right management and training and plus everything that goes with it - without a doubt. No doubt in my mind [I can become champion]."