Unbeaten super-bantamweight Scott Quigg has said he will not be rushed into a world title fight as he prepares to take on veteran Jason Booth for the British belt on Saturday night.
The 23-year-old from Bury will be taking the next step in his fledgling career when he faces the experienced Booth at Bolton’s Reebok Stadium and while he is expected to come out victorious, he is not underestimating his worldly opponent.
“Booth is a very experienced fighter but I am younger, fresher, stronger and have more knockout power,” Quigg states.
“I will not be taking his experience for granted, so I need to make sure I approach this fight in the correct way.”
The WBA Inter-Continental champion has, quite understandably, focused much of his training camp working on his own strategy. However, he is not taking Booth lightly and has done his research on the British champion.
“Of course, I have been focusing on my own strengths and getting myself ready for the fight, but Booth is a very experienced fighter,” Quigg explains.
“I’ve watched a few of his fights and I’ve got to make sure I take away what he’s good at.
“Ultimately, I need to concentrate on what I can offer in the ring but at the same time take away his strengths.”
And how does Quigg believe he will defeat Booth?
“I will need to apply smart pressure and make him work at a pace he is not comfortable with,” he replies.
“The most important thing is to not let him get into a rhythm. If he gets into a rhythm, he’s a good fighter and it could become a very, very hard night for me.
“That doesn’t mean I will come out all guns blazing, it’s just about applying that smart pressure in an intelligent way.”
If, as expected, Quigg comes through Saturday’s bout victorious, there will be the inevitable calls for him to step up and challenge for a world title.
He is currently ranked at number 3 with the WBA and is very much in contention for a shot at the big prize.
However, Quigg eagerly stresses that he will not allow himself to be fast-tracked for a world title, instead preferring to build a solid foundation so when his shot arrives, he will be fully prepared.
“The chance for a world title could be round the corner but it’s all about taking those fights at the right time in your career,” he says.
“There are still at least two good domestic fights left for me in Rendall Munroe and Carl Frampton.
“Then there’s Kiko Martinez, the European champion, so there’s some good fights out there for me to gain valuable experience before moving on to world level.
“Taking the more gradual route and not rushing in for a world title shot will hold me in good stead when I do get my chance on the world stage.”
Quigg is effectively using the career of his promoter, Ricky Hatton, as a blueprint of how to work up to the pinnacle of boxing.
“Ricky is the perfect example,” he points out.
“He got the right fights at the right time, he got that experience and when he was at world level as a fighter, he was ready for it. Ricky then went on to become one of the greatest British fighters of all-time.”
However, Quigg is not looking beyond Saturday night and has been so focused on the British title bout that he completely ignored his birthday.
“There was no chance to celebrate as I was right in the middle of my training, it just wasn’t worth it,” he explains.
“It didn’t even register because I’ve been so focused on getting prepared for the fight.
“The real celebration will come after Saturday night when I’m crowned British champion.
He adds: “Booth has claimed he has fought fighters like me before – young fighters that are coming through – and has always prevailed.
“But I know I can bring something different to the table and he won’t be able to handle it.”
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