British champion Matty Askin says he will not employ the “stupid” tactics of Lawrence Okolie’s past opponents in their cruiserweight clash at Wembley.
The experienced title holder makes his second defence against Okolie, one of Britain’s most exciting prospects, on the undercard for Anthony Joshua’s world title fight with Alexander Povetkin on Saturday, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Askin recognises the threat posed by the former Team GB fighter, who has seven stoppages in nine victories, but does not intend to allow Okolie another clear opportunity to unleash his knockout power.
“Without disrespecting what he’s achieved and what he’s done, look at what the men have done when they’ve been in front of him,” said Askin.
“They have been sitting ducks who think they are able to stand there and take the power. The guy can punch, so it’s a stupid tactic to have.
“At this level, there is so much more to boxing. I think that’s what is going to unfold on Saturday night.”
But Okolie has already visualised this encounter, having studied Askin closely, and intends to show that he is a class above the Blackpool man.
“Askin is definitely a good fighter, I knew that before the fight even got made, because I like to watch everyone in the division,” said Okolie.
“I feel like people need to differentiate popularity from ability. I do think that Askin has a lot of ability, but I feel like skill for skill, it will show that I’m on another level.”
Luke Campbell has linked up with new trainer Shane McGuigan ahead of his rematch with Yvan Mendy on the same bill, and expects to avenge his 2015 defeat in a final eliminator for the WBC lightweight title.
“This is a fight I’ve wanted for the last three years,” said Campbell. “I’ve had a great training camp and prepared the right way.
“This is must-win and I believe I will get the win. Shane McGuigan has added to my style.
“We know what Mendy brings to the table, he’s tough, strong and comes forward. It’ll be a great fight.”
Earlier in the evening, David Price can dramatically revive his career if he pulls off an upset win against Sergey Kuzmin after stepping in as a late replacement to face the unbeaten Russian heavyweight.
“I’m ready to meet Kuzmin head on,” said the Liverpudlian. “It’s excitement guaranteed every time I fight. He will never have been hit by someone like me. Don’t blink, people.
“The upside of winning this fight, it’s potentially life-changing. I’ll do whatever it takes to win.”