Hidenori Otake takes on Scott Quigg for the WBA super bantamweight title – and the Japanese star wants to become a history maker on Saturday night at the sold-out ECHO Arena in Liverpool, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
This is only the second time in boxing history that a Japanese boxer has come to England to challenge for the world title, the first was Mitsunori Seki, who was stopped in nine rounds by Howard Winstone way back in 1968 for the vacant WBC featherweight crown.
Otake knows he has a tough task ahead of him against Quigg who has stopped his last three challengers and is a brutal body puncher, but the Japanese champion is expecting to cause an upset on Merseyside.
“I’ve seen three of his fights and I have watched them a lot,” said Otake. “Scott is a good fighter, he’s got a tight guard, he punches hard and his body is strong.
“I believe in myself – that’s all that matters. I won the Japanese title three years ago and in Japan, the lower weight levels are the hardest, I’ve defended it four times and often against the number one challenger. I couldn’t get a world title challenge but none of them wanted it so I am so hungry.
“We’re grateful for the chance but we’re going to make it count and take the title home. I’ve had a dream to become the world champion and I want to make it a reality on Saturday.
Quigg’s clash with Otake is part of a massive night as Nathan Cleverly and Tony Bellew’s rematch tops a huge night of action in Liverpool, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
WBA world bantamweight champion Jamie McDonnell defends his strap against Javier Chacon.
Three of Britain’s best super middleweights are in action as James DeGale MBE faces Marco Antonio Periban, Callum Smith tackles Nikola Sjekloca in a WBC world title eliminator and George Groves takes on Denis Douglin.
Olympic heavyweight hero Anthony Joshua MBE takes on Michael Sprott in a British title eliminator, Matchroom Boxing’s newest signing Bradley Saunders aims to extend his unbeaten run in the light welterweight division, while German KO star Vincent Feigenbutz makes his UK debut.
Courtesy of the Matchroom Boxing press office