Adam Smith previews Jamie McDonnell’s world title defence against Naoya Inoue
Jamie McDonnell has prepared for a “brutal” battle with Naoya Inoue and is ready to prove himself as the world’s best bantamweight, says David Coldwell.
This is a fight that Jamie has been crying out for, to be honest, and everyone is saying ‘why has he taken this fight?’ ‘Inoue is a monster.’ It’s for all those reasons, because the wins that Jamie’s had so far in his career haven’t given him the credit, the profile, and the respect that he deserves. A win over Inoue, who is a pound-for-pound fighter – ‘surely they have to give me credit after I beat him’, that’s his attitude.
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He’s been written off before, and he’s beaten good fighters before. He beat Tomoki Kameda the first time around and people thought he got lucky. Then they had the rematch and Kameda was supposed to figure him out, but Jamie went and beat him easier the second time around. Jamie McDonnell is the most unfancied high-quality fighter you will see. He’s got 100 per cent belief in his own ability and we have 100 per cent belief in him.
Inoue, he’s a two-time world champion, but at a smaller weight of light-flyweight and super-flyweight. He’s boxing guys who are naturally a lot smaller than what Jamie McDonnell is. The advantages that Jamie’s got are his physicality, his boxing ability is very underrated, and I’ll tell you what is underrated – his toughness.
Highlights of Inoue's stoppage win over Antonio Nieves
Inoue is talking about ending it with one shot. He’s known as ‘The Monster’ and he’s known as a massive puncher, but I don’t believe he’s fought anyone as tough as Jamie McDonnell. Jamie has got to get through the first three or four rounds. He’s prepared for this to be absolutely brutal, and is prepared to be hit harder than he’s ever been hit in his life and for it to be very, very tough. But he’s got it in his head that whatever happens, he’s going to win the fight.
Inoue is more of a destructive machine than Kameda. He’s a very good boxer, don’t get me wrong, he can pick his punches very well, closes the ring down, but he’s more feared for his power. He’s not been really, really tested, not by someone who is in there and believes they can win. Jamie McDonnell, he expects to win. It’s not a fight where he’s thinking ‘I’m going to give it a go’. He believes that he’s the best bantamweight in the world.
Watch Jamie McDonnell, in Tokyo, on Friday, May 25, from 1pm, live on Sky Sports Action before Kal Yafai takes on David Carmona in the early hours of Sunday morning, from 2.30am, on Sky Sports Action.