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EXCLUSIVE: Anthony Fowler (@afowler06) reveals all on amateur career, Olympics, turning pro and sparring @Carl_Froch

By Dan Davies (@DanDavies98)

Today we caught up with the World Championship Bronze Medallist, Commonwealth Games Gold Medallist and Rio 2016 Olympian, The Machine, Anthony Fowler. We were able to discuss his amateur career, his Olympic experience, his future pro career as well as the times where sparred former WBA, IBF and WBC Super Middleweight champion of the world, Carl ‘The Cobra’ Froch. Read the full interview below!

 

 

TWBW: How many amateur bouts have you had?

AF: 209 fights with a record of 190-19

 

TWBW: What would you say is your biggest achievement as an amateur?

AF: It’s probably when I won the bronze medal at the World Championships because that put me in the top 3 in the world. Winning the Gold at the Commonwealth Games was a massive achievement as well but the world bronze, I think, is harder to achieve.

 

TWBW: What was your biggest learning experience from the 2016 Olympic games?

AF: I thought I won the first round, it was a close round but I thought I nicked it. In the second round the lad hit me with a big shot which caught me flush and snapped my head back but instead of defending myself and moving off, my own ego got the better of me and by doing that I fell in and therefore he caught me with another straight shot so the ref then give me a standing count. I learned that you can’t fight with your ego, if you get caught with big shots you need to regroup. I also learned that I can’t just rush back in and try to hit them straight away because it back fired on me badly.

 

TWBW: You’ve made it no secret that you will be turning pro, when will this be?

AF: I think it will be in March or April. I’m in negotiations now as we speak. I’ve had a few meetings and I’m just waiting on who gives me the best offer to turn pro and then we will get the ball rolling.

 

TWBW: Will you be fighting again for GB or is that it now until your pro debut?

AF: Well the WSB starts again next month so if the negotiations aren’t finalised by then, I might have one last bout for GB just to keep me active and busy so then when I do start my professional career, I’ll be firing on all cylinders straight away rather than having to warm in to it. I don’t want to be boxing against loads of journeymen, I want to put a good show on for the fans who are going to pay to watch me. I stand by that fully; I don’t want to be boxing people who don’t come to fight.

 

TWBW: Are you allowed to say which promoters you’ve had offers off?

AF: People could probably guess, it’s no secret who they are. I’ve had offers off the top promoters in the country.

 

TWBW: Where will you be doing most of your training as a pro?

AF: I don’t think you’re allowed to train in Sheffield as a pro so I’m going to get a professional coach. I’ve got a few in mind but we will see what happens with them.

 

TWBW: What weight will you be competing at as a pro?

AF: Well as it stands, I’m walking around at 76kg and light-middleweight is only 6 kilos below me (70kg) but I am always in great shape and I’ve got hardly any body fat. I want to start off boxing around Middleweight but eventually I plan to go down to light-middleweight for title fights.

 

TWBW: I guess your nickname will be “The Machine”?

AF: Yeah. The things with the machine is that it’s a good nickname. I’ve had it for years because people always call it me, I didn’t give it to myself. When I’m training on the track I always win the runs, I used to lift the heaviest weight in the gym and I’m one of the P4P biggest punchers in the team so people just started called me a machine and eventually it just stuck. Team Machine!

 

TWBW: In the amateurs, you got cut a few times, does this worry you going in to the pro game with smaller gloves?

AF: No. To be honest when I get cut its my own fault. I always get too involved instead of boxing clever which I can do. I try to hurt them, knock them out and force the fight and because the amateurs if fought at such a fast pace, it is more common to get cut with my style. When I’m sparring pros its very different and I find it easier because we box at a slower pace whereas in the amateurs it’s just all guns blazing because you’ve only got 3 rounds. I don’t think it will be a problem because anyone can get cut, but I just make it more likely to happen due to boxing too aggressively but I’m addressing that as we speak.

 

TWBW: What do you think will be the biggest challenge in the transition from the amateur game to the pro game?

AF: Building my stamina. Boxing 3 rounds is hard but boxing 12 rounds will be even harder because I will need to pace it better and there will be bigger shots with people really trying to hurt me. I know I beat most pros in the country now over 6-8 rounds because I’ve been in with the top pros and I always do well so I know I can beat most of them as it is now. It is about getting that stamina ready for 12 rounds. The pro ranks are very tough and I need to do things like keeping my chin down, not wasting energy and working on my body shots. I know what I need to do and when I eventually turn pro, I will have a great team around me. I always work very hard so with the right people around me, I believe I can get to the very top.

 

TWBW: I know that Carl Froch trained down Sheffield a bit for the George Groves fights. Did you do any sparring with him?

AF: I was Froch’s chief sparring partner for the second George Groves fight and I did over 100 rounds with him! He told me that he rates me very highly which gave me a lot of confidence.

 

TWBW: Eubank Jr was also there to spar Carl, were you able to do any rounds with him?

AF: I wasn’t no. I asked to go in with him but he only came to do rounds with Carl. I watched that spar and I was actually impressed with Chris Eubank Jr because before that I thought he was all hype and then after watching that session, I realised that he was actually good.

 

TWBW: You’re turning over quite late compared to a few of the other past GB lads. Do you feel you’ll need to be fast tracked to make the most of the time?

AF: Yeah sort of. As I said before, I don’t need to be messing around boxing journeymen because I am at a higher level than that. When people watch my fight’s, I think they will get a shock because of how good I am. I’ve boxed a 6ft 1 lad before and he had very fast feet, and was constantly moving but when I start boxing pros I will perform better because they like to hold their feet, they’re flat footed and they come for a fight and that suits me all day! I think people will be shocked at how good I am. I am/have been sparring Martin Murray, Carl Froch and John Ryder who are all top pros and I’m at the same level as all them, I know I am for a fact. I just need to get that stamina built up so that I can go for a longer period of time and I’ll beat them all.

 

TWBW: Finally, what would you have liked to achieve by the end of 2017?

AF: My first year will be more about learning my trade rather than chasing titles. I think the titles become an option next year because I don’t think I’ll be fighting for any major belt this year. I want to get around 6 or 7 fights and get a few knockouts so the public can look at my style which will get my name out there a bit more. This year I learn my trade, next year we move on for titles and hopefully within 3 or 4 years I will be at world level which I know I’m capable of.

 

 

We would like to thank Anthony Fowler for kindly giving up some of his time to speak to us today. Please share this article on Facebook and Twitter using the links below! #TWBW

 

 

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