Renowned trainer Freddie Roach is excited to guide Ivan Baranchyk in the battle of the unbeatens vs Josh Taylor, the WBSS Super-Lightweight Semi-Final and IBF World Championship tonight at The SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland.
Roach, who is widely regarded as one of the best boxing trainers of all time, the man behind champions like Manny Pacquiao, Julio César Chávez Jr. and Michael Gotto, has only been with ‘The Beast’ for eight weeks, but the legend is impressed by what he has been seeing so far from the Belarusian.
“Ivan is a very good fighter,” said Roach. “He listens very well, he is very dedicated, he trains really, really hard. He is a really strong kid.”
Roach has prepared his boxer to enter the Lion’s Den against Scotland’s Josh Taylor, the undefeated southpaw from Prestonpans just on hour's drive from Glasgow.
“We are in with a strong opponent of course. This fellow is tall, he is lanky, shabby, he has got this nice jab and this counter hook over the jab with his southpaw stance,“ said Roach and continued:
“The training has gone really well, and Ivan has had some good sparring. I have had four southpaws in my gym, really good kids, and it worked out really well.
We have a good game plan, and Ivan has been working really well with it. Ivan is the underdog, and I love being the underdog. We got something to prove.
“We are here to win, and I think my guy will knock him out. I don’t think he (Taylor) has ever been in a real hard, hard fight, and this might be his first one. He better be ready. I met him, he is a very nice man, and I wish him the best of luck, but he better be ready,” said Roach who likes the best v best format of the World Boxing Super Series.
“That’s what I love to see in boxing. This is what we need in boxing, more of this. It doesn’t get any better than this."
And the best at 140lb, Roach believes, is either Taylor or Baranchyk:
"I believe the winner of this fight will win the Ali Trophy.”