By Andrew McCart (@Andy_FCBoxing)
On March 4th ‘Dirty’ Derry Mathews will lace up the gloves for the 52nd time in his professional career when he takes on the young and unbeaten Ohara Davies for the WBC Silver super lightweight title, at the O2 Arena, London.
Now, if you’re a boxing fan and on social media, then you would have no doubt noticed the war of words going on between these two fighters over the last couple of weeks. Davies has even gone as far as posting photos of Mathews’ previous fights where he has been knocked down. Even calling Mathews desperate, 50 years old and that the only reason the Liverpool native wants the fight is for a payday.
“I think he (Davies) shows a bit of disrespect.” Mathews told FirstClassBoxing.com in response. “He’s wanted the fight and now that the fight has been made, he’s kept his mouth quiet. There’s no where to hide. Eddie (Hearn) and Matchroom have made the fight and there’s no pulling out of it now. If he pulls out he’s a coward. He’s asked for the fight, he’s got it and I’ve moved up in weight. All the motivation I need is the bad mouthing he’s gave me and I know I’m going to win the fight.”
Davies, has made a blistering start to his professional career so far. The 24-year old Londoner now boasts a 14-0 record with 11 of those wins coming by way of stoppage and in his last outing he outpointed Andrea Scarpa to claim the WBC Silver title back in November. This might seem impressive to some people, but not to Mathews.
“I’m going to leave the game plan up to Danny (Vaughan), but I think Davies is very amateurish. He’s only had 14 fights and goes on like he’s a big puncher because he’s knocked 11 out, but he’s never been hit. That’s what I’m going to do, I’m going to see what he’s like when he gets hit. It’s a different game then…. Let’s be honest he’s had everything his own way, he’s been gifted his opponents.
“I’m just looking forward now to having the best camp I could possibly have, lock myself away and be the best Derry Mathews on the night.”
Although Mathews is stepping up to 140 pounds for the first time. The 33 year old has every confidence that he can carry the knockout power that has won him so many titles down lightweight up to the super lightweight division.
“As I’ve got older, I think I’ve become more of a puncher. When I first started making 9 stone 9 (lightweight) from featherweight I was banging everyone out. Lately its been the last couple of weeks of camp that’s been difficult making lightweight. I’m moving up for this one, I’m going to be putting more fuel in my body and I believe I’ll carry he power. I think I can knock anyone out if I hit them on the chin, its like any fighter. A flyweight can knockout a featherweight, it’s how you connect the shot.”
At 33 years of age and being a 50 fight veteran, Mathews still has that burning desire to become a world champion and if all goes to plan on March 4th, the Liverpudlian wants to stay at 140 with the hopes of winning a world title down the line.
“I want to stay at 140 when I win the fight. I think I’ll become mandatory for (Terence) Crawford, but lets be honest Crawford isn’t going to want to box me, he’s going to say who’s Derry Mathews, I’ve never heard of him. Crawford’s got bigger fish to fry, so hopefully the belt will become vacant… Similar to Gavin McDonnell who is fighting for a vacant belt, Tony Bellew did as well. If the belt does become vacant hopefully I can fight a Brit for it.
Mathews Continued. “Ricky Burns might become the IBF and WBA champion and if I’m the mandatory for the WBC, you never know what can happen. I’ve got a good relationship with the Scottish fans as well. It is interesting, but at the moment I’m just focusing on Ohara Davies and I’ll let me team deal with whatever comes next.
“I’ve still got that ambition to become a world champion, if I didn’t still have it I’m sure Danny would tell me. The ambition is definitely still there or I wouldn’t lock myself away from my family. I believe I still have a lot more to offer, I still want to get up in the morning and train, I want to train extra hard. I know it’s going to be hard because I’m getting older and I’m putting my body through pain, but if that’s what it takes to become a world champion, that’s what I’m going to do.”