Anthony Yarde believes he is within touching distance of a world title

James Tonks

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Anthony Yarde’s career is progressing fast and fans are excited to see the prospect from Hackney, London work his way to a world title. Yarde has a fight scheduled against Tony Averlant on February 10 at The Copper Box Arena, live on BoxNation.

Unbeaten in 2017 and picking titles up along the way, Yarde told

“I think 2017 was a very good year, every fight I had was a knock out. I won all my fights and I picked up three titles as well, three professional titles – 2017 went very well.”

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Yarde was happy with his activity in 2017 and expects to be busy this year:

“If I can get around the same four or five fights, I’ll be happy. Again, with boxing sometimes you don’t realise that sometimes it can elevate quickly. As you go on in your career sometimes you fight less and less. I’m still gaining experience and I want to try and stay relatively active – I’m en route to it, it’s going well.”

Yesterday Yarde learned who his opponent was, but, he doesn’t know much about the Frenchman:

“I don’t know anything about my opponent, same as all my 14 opponents that I have had. Tunde and Frank Warren, they have been structuring and dealing with my career so far. I’ve been doing my job in the ring and I want to keep it that way.”

Some fighters study their opponents by watching fights on sites such as YouTube. Yarde added:

“I don’t – I don’t know if that’s just my preference. I feel like when I started off in the amateurs, in the amateurs you don’t really know who you’re fighting. You don’t know where there from so you don’t necessary know their background until the day.

“I feel like when I do something, I gain experience. I really digest that experience that I’m gaining, so when I started off in the amateurs – that’s the way it was. It’s like I’ve carried on that mentality over to the pros.”

Yarde may change his thinking when he steps up his level of opponent:

“I feel like that’s the level where you eventually have to start looking at your opponents and taking things a bit different.”

Yarde believes the best piece of boxing advice giving to him is: “To focus on myself.”

Fight fans are excited and expect big things, but that comes with added high demand. Fighters all have their different ways to cope with pressure:

“By literally not thinking about it – I focus on each occasion as it comes and focus on my development.”

Yarde doesn’t have any plans to go after a world title in 2018:

“I haven’t got any plans to do anything really but fight. If you want to talk about the plans going forward for me, you’re best talking to Frank Warren.”

Fight fans have been suggesting who Yarde should fight throughout his career, Yarde added:

“The reason I’m going to give you this answer is because this is something I go by. It’s one of my morals which is ‘to focus on myself’.

“I try not to look at any other fighter out there and from experience, everyone was talking about Andre Ward being the main person in the division – he retired.

“There was another time people were telling me I should fight Nathan Cleverly because he had a world title at the time. Not only because he had a world title but because of his experience and being British as well it would have been good domestically. I know he retired.

“I’m just one of those people who like to focus on myself and my development.”

Yarde is rising through the ranks, but what separates him from his competition?

“I’ll leave that down to the fans and public to judge that. I’ll probably say just looking at myself it’s my mentality. The way I approach things and the way I look at things.”

Yarde respects the champions in the light heavyweight division:

“The top fighters in my division right now would be the current world champions. I only focus on myself; I will have to put myself in there, not being boisterous or arrogant.

“It’s just to be a boxer you have to have self-confidence and you have to have a goal in your head. So, again if you believe you’re the best you’re on your way to beating the best – that’s my motto. I’ll say myself and the current world champions.”

Many fighters such as Tyson Fury like to be very vocal on who they want to fight and aren’t shy in doing so. Yarde doesn’t like calling fighters out:

“That’s not my personality.

“I feel like when you get to the world scene and you’ve established yourself. I feel like everyone’s got there levels when they accomplish things, some people want to become British champion, some people want to become southern area champion, some want to become world champion, some want to become pound-for -pound king – all different sorts of pros .

“My first goal is to become world champion. Everything that happens going towards that stage is just a progression to get to that world title. When I do get to world title stages, that’s when you need to start entertaining in a different way, that’s just what I believe, that’s me studying the sport. Looking at Mike Tyson, how he was in the beginning when he had to start selling tickets and being entertaining. The same with Roy Jones, Floyd Mayweather and all these big sellers – at the same time as being a sport, it’s a business. Until I reach my status of at least becoming a world champion, that’s what I’m focusing on.”

Yarde believes he is within touching distance of a world title:

“Literally within grabbing distance – how long it’s going to take? I don’t know that’s why I focus on myself and keep working; it can happen at any time, anytime from now.”

Yarde had a message for his fans. Even the doubters:

“The ones that are supporting me, I love you.

“The ones that are being negative and things like that, I love you. Because people are speaking about you, saying anything is a positive for your career.

“I believe personally athletes and entertainers are nothing without fans and supporters. “

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