Home Boxing News John Ryder believes the timing is right to spring the upset on...

John Ryder believes the timing is right to spring the upset on Canelo Alvarez

Photo Credit: Melina Pizano/Matchroom.

England’s John ‘The Gorilla’ Ryder 32-5 (18) has suggested undisputed super middleweight champion Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez 58-2-2 (39) is on the slide ahead of his challenge for the WBC, WBA, WBO and IBF boss at Akron Stadium in Zapopan, Mexico on May 6.

The 34-year-old Ryder is in career best form, winning four fights on the trot since his competitive points loss to then-WBA champion Callum ‘Mundo’ Smith 29-1 (21) in November 2019. Last year he scored a split decision victory over former IBF middleweight champion Daniel Jacobs 37-4 (30) and claimed the scalp of the undefeated Zach Parker 22-1 (16), who withdrew from the bout after four rounds with a broken right hand.

Mexican superstar Alvarez, 32, had mixed results in 2021. In May he jumped up a weight class to challenge WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol 21-0 (11), losing a unanimous decision. His trilogy bout against Gennadiy Golovkin 42-2-1 (37) in September was more competitive than many were expecting in the lead up, a fight he won by close unanimous decision.

Ryder believes the time is right for him to roll Alvarez.

“It’s no secret Saul Alvarez is coming off his worst year as a pro, having lost to Bivol and then not the vintage performance against Golovkin in the third fight that I think everyone was expecting,” Ryder said to Matchroom Boxing.

“Whereas I feel like last year I had my best year, defeating Danny Jacobs [by split decision] and then getting myself in line for the WBO world title and beating Zach Parker [by fourth-round technical knockout].

“So there’s always that to look at. I know he had an injury, I know he’s coming back from it, so it’s all to be seen if it was down to the injury. But I’m the man in the opposite corner to test it out.”

There is no doubting Alvarez’s pedigree. After moving up from middleweight in December 2020 to capture the WBA and WBC titles from Smith, he would lift the WBO strap from Billy Joe Saunders 30-1 (14) the following May and the IBF belt from Caleb Plant 22-1 (13) in November with both victories coming by way of knockout.

“Listen, he’s still very dangerous,” Ryder said. “He’s still an excellent tactician. He gets things spot on. And listen, he had a great year in the year when he become undisputed [in 2021]. What did he fight, three times that year? He really changed the game. He’s had so much success that you can only respect him.

“There’s no bad blood here from me. I respect him as a fighter. It’s not gonna be hard for me to study his fights because I’ve watched most of them already, so it’s just YouTube again, more Canelo fights and just pay more attention now to what he does good and what mistakes he makes.”