The word on the street is that London teenager Daniel Dubois will soon emerge as the cock of the British heavyweight playground.
With five national junior titles plus a British senior crown already on his amateur CV, the 6ft 5in, 17 stone ‘Dangerous Dan’ is primed to explode onto the professional scene when he debuts at Manchester Arena in early April.
Meek beyond the ropes ‘D-D’ a mighty proposition between as Cockney coach Martin Bowers reveals in this exclusive interview with Glynn Evans.
“Daniel’s dad Dave used to use The Peacock and he’d have first brought Daniel to the gym when he was six or seven. He was always a big kid.
In addition to The Peacock, Daniel worked out at a lot of the top amateur gyms across London such as The Repton, Dale Youth, the Lynn, the Fisher and Islington, picking up different bits from lots of top coaches.
That certainly weren’t a bad thing. I believe he won four or five national junior titles.
He’s definitely a prospect and I believe I got him at the right age. You know what they say about not being able to teach an old dog new tricks. It’s far better to get a kid relatively fresh when they’ve no habits rather than bad habits which can be very difficult to eliminate.
For the kid’s sake I don’t want to say too much as I don’t want to put unnecessary pressure on him. I believe we’ve got a very gifted kid on our hands. We’ve got the embryo to model something really nice. Provided he’s matched and promoted correctly – and he’s in the very best hands – we feel we’ve half a chance with him but it ain’t half a long road!
The obvious thing is how ridiculously powerful he is for someone so young. He’s 104 kilos of pure granite. There’s a real thud reverberating around the gym every time he smashes the heavy bag and he really scorches my hands when I take him on the pads. Remember, the kid’s just 19. Lord, knows how destructive he’ll be at 24, 25.
On the GB camps, he’s sparred (Anthony) Joshua, Joe Joyce and Frazer Clarke. You’ll have heard all the rumours! Recently, I took him to Brighton to spar Nick Webb and Scott Welch’s son. By all accounts, he acquitted himself very well in every instance. He’s gonna grow into a very good fighter.
Obviously there’s plenty we still have to iron out but he’s blessed with a lovely natural jab and he’s got a good eye. He’s got nice speed, already punches very correctly and has good balance.
Previously I worked with a heavyweight called Wayne Llewellyn, who I took all over Europe and the States, and he had the potential to be a very decent prospect. Unfortunately, he was more concerned with how his hair, his shorts, his boots looked than what he had to do to win the fight. This kid’s different. Already he’s got great concentration and focus.
Above all, Daniel’s a very nice boy, willing to learn, a good listener, never moans. He’s not at all big headed and he’s never a bully in sparring. He thanks his opponents after fights. He’s a good liver, perfect role model material.
Personality wise, he reminds me of a Joe Louis, walking around with this permanent smile on his face like Orville! You’ll not find him slapping faces at press conferences or spitting water in opponent’s faces. He’ll sell himself on his qualities as a fighter rather than the back of something else. We’re trusting that the British fight fans will follow a good fighter rather than someone on a soapbox. Restoring a bit of respectability to boxing certainly won’t hurt.
At this early stage, I’ll be keen to get him out a minimum of six times a year and we’ll not be looking to run too fast because you don’t know what his nerves will be like. The two things we’ll definitely be anxious to avoid are over matching him and under matching him. It’s crucial he gets the right fights. But it promises to be a very exciting journey. We’re gonna have some real fun with him!”
Terry Flanagan vs. Petr Petrov tops an unmissable evening of action at the Manchester Arena on April 8; Super-Welterweight rivals Liam Smith and Liam Williams clash in one of the most anticipated domestic dust-ups in recent times; slick South African Zolani Tete faces Arthur Villanueva in a final eliminator for the WBO World Bantamweight strap; double Olympic Gold Medallist and women’s boxing icon Nicola Adams OBE fights for the first time as a professional and former Team GB Heavyweight monster Daniel Dubois makes his highly-anticipated professional debut along with a talent packed undercard.
Tickets for April 8 priced £50, £70, £100, £150, £200, £300 and VIP £500 are available from eventim at http://www.eventim.co.uk and 0844 249 1000 and the Manchester Arena at http://www.manchester-arena.com and 0844 847 8000.