By Jonny Stapleton
Training with IBF featherweight champion Billy Dib doesn’t just give Irish fighter Tony Bates confidence that he will extend his unbeaten run tonight, but ensures the type of self belief to enable the fighter to predict a career at the top of the boxing pile.
‘Irish Psycho’ takes on fellow unbeaten novice Jake Moulden in Mansfield Tavern, Queensland, Australia and is brimming with self-confidence having trained side by side with the world champ over the last number of months. Indeed sharing the squared circle, albeit only in training, with the Aussis prompts Bates to claim he has the potentail to have bright boxing future.
The latest Clondalkin boxing graduate has been studying Dib and wants to pay him the sincere form of compliment by imitating him his style as much as he can.
“Training with Billy dib in preparation for both his title defense (against Eduardo Escobedo ) and my fourth pro fight gives me tremendous confidence going into tonight’s fight. I now know I can mix it with the worlds best and my self belief has sky rocketed due to this,” Bates told www.irish-boxing.com before admitting there is a long road to the top.
“Just from watching the champ, who is one of the best technically gifted fighters I’ve ever seen, has helped me improve as I can see how he puts his shots together. He is never rushed but perfectly timed and technically sound. Im trying to emulate this because I know my game technically is far from sound and knowing this I want to improve with every fight and training session.”
Bates, another Irish fighter on the up Down Under, hopes to display what he has learnt over the coming 12 months to ensure he progresses into title contention, but Is eager not to rush.
“I’m really looking forward to 2012 and moving up the ladder, keeping my unbeaten record and staying injury free. We plan to have six to seven fights this year. Hopefully we can win them all and move up the ladder, but I am not getting to far ahead of myself. I am just focusing on tonight’s bout against Jake. He is unbeaten in two so it will prove to be a hard battle but I’m confident of claiming the win as I’ve put the hard yards in.”