David Price tells Sky Sports about another calculated risk against Derek Chisora, the insignificance of past sparring sessions, and jostling with the world’s best.
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Price offered no shock responses when he was given the task of taking on Derek Chisora at late notice on Saturday night’s Regis Prograis-Josh Taylor bill at The O2, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Preparing diligently at his North Liverpool base under the studious tutelage of Joe McNally, Price’s focus was originally set on November 23 for an opening on Callum Smith’s world title defence show against John Ryder. When Joseph Parker withdrew, a host of names were originally linked with this Saturday’s London date, and Price believed deep down that he had a fair chance of receiving the call.
“I’m not necessarily saying I knew I was going to end up with the Chisora fight, but I did have a feeling that not everything might run smooth with all the fights being made. I was in the gym training hard and I’m ready for the fight.”
Both have featured on the British heavyweight scene for the best part of the last decade, with the occasional foray for each at world level, and this fight brings together a duo who’ve contributed massively to the domestic boxing scene, both amateur and professional, with a number of entertaining scraps on their respective ledgers. Despite their length of service to the sport, sparring sessions between the pair have been scarce, and Price is taking nothing from the punches that both men exchanged with each other nearly 10 years ago.
“It’s probably been about eight or nine years since me and Derek last sparred, I reckon. I was a novice professional at the time on the way up and he was very much an established fighter who was competing for titles.
“There’s nothing to really take from them at all as it was years ago and we’re both different fighters now anyway. The thing I’m working on is just making sure that I get my shots off and that I stop him getting close.
“This is a good opportunity for me, and I want to make sure I do everything I can to take it, because there could be some bigger fights out for me after this.”
Once a fighter with long-term plans that centred on the biggest prizes that boxing has to offer, a number of unforeseen defeats have forced Price to change his forward-thinking strategy and instead concentrate on the immediate challenges in front of him. One of Britain’s finest ever amateurs, Price, still a huge draw in boxing despite the number of setbacks he’s had to endure, is still pushing hard to be the very best he can and he’s hopeful that his July victory over Dave Allen can be the platform for further successes.
“There was a lot said before the Dave Allen fight about what would happen to him if he won and there was a big fight on the table for him against Alexander Povetkin, and I want those big fights as well.
“That was me at my best that night and I know what I’m capable of when I perform like that. Against Derek, it’s going to be a harder fight, but I know if I turn up at my best then I’m a hard fight for anyone.