World champion Sunny Edwards says attempts from Muhammad Waseem to ‘play on his ego’ and lure him into a war won’t work.
The flyweights collide in a hotly anticipated fight for the IBF world title at Probellum Evolution on Saturday night in Dubai and both men are hugely confident of victory.
Edwards and Waseem came face-to-face in the Irish Village on Thursday night in front of a boisterous St Patrick’s Day crowd and though the title holder admits to being “a bit arrogant” he is adamant he won’t fall for the Pakistani’s mind games.
Edwards said: “I’m flashy, maybe a bit cocky, maybe a bit arrogant.
“I know their team are banking on trying to draw me out of how I normally box and play to my pride and my ego but that is making it a whole heap worse, because I can go the full 12 rounds and allow for zero shots to land if I want.”
Waseem responded: “Watch the fight and there will be a big upset on Saturday night. All the talk will be finished. Viva Pakistan!”
The co-main event at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium on Saturday night sees former world champion Regis Prograis clash with Ireland’s Tyrone McKenna in a final eliminator for the WBC super-lightweight title.
There has been no love lost in the build-up and the animosity scaled new heights when they sat across the stage from each other on Thursday and engaged in some no-filter pre-fight exchanges.
Prograis said: “The fight happened because he was talking trash on online, he was on Twitter and he was talking a load of trash, I was like: ‘Who the hell is this?!’ I found out and that’s why we are here. He wanted the fight, so we are here.
“If he takes this punishment for 10 rounds, then he’s a tough guy, but at the same time I don’t see him taking it for 10 rounds.”
McKenna said: “I see it as I wanted to batter Prograis, I called him out and I got what I wanted. Everytime I want a fight, I make it happen, I am a self-promoting king.
“This fight on Saturday will be defined by two things: war and brutality.”
Liverpool’s supremely talented Peter McGrail is also on Saturday night’s packed card in Dubai and the former two-time World Amateur Championship bronze medallist, is promising a dazzling display.
The gifted McGrail said: “My style is about looking to not get hit and to punish my opponent. You’ll see loads of skills on show, loads of angles, fast feet, brilliant head movement and just a stylish display on Saturday.”
This is how you watch back-to-back nights of world championship boxing from Dubai on Friday and Saturday.