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Tim Tszyu call Michael Zerafa a “50 grand fighter”, selects winner of Tank Davis vs Ryan Garcia fight

Tim Tszyu and Michael Zerafa. Photo credit: James Alcock/Sydney Morning Herald

Interim WBO junior middleweight champion Tim Tszyu 22-0 (16) has labelled rival Michael Zerafa 31-4 (19) a $50,000 fighter and has vowed to never give him a payday.

The beef between Tszyu and Zerafa dates back two years when Melbourne’s Zerafa, 31, was a last minute withdrawal from their scheduled bout in Newcastle in July 2021.

Tszyu, who is mandated a shot at undisputed 154-pound champion Jermell Charlo 35-1-1 (19), is looking at getting back in the ring in the Australian winter if the American titleholder is still on the sidelines recovering from a hand injury.

It won’t, however, be against Zerafa.

“Zerafa is a 50 grand fighter,” Tszyu told Fox Sports Australia. “That’s the most he is ever going to make in his fights.

“So a fifty-fifty split?

“I will never, ever – ever – in my life give that man an opportunity to make $1 million.

“There are plenty of fighters far more deserving.

“Plus, right now, I think I’m doing good things with Australian boxing. And I don’t need that clown involved with any of those successes.

“Do you even remember his last fight? I’m told people were falling asleep in the crowd.

“Nobody cares about him. Nobody knows his pay-per-view numbers. The guy is old news.”

The 28-year-old Sydneysider also gave his take on this weekend’s blockbuster clash between Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis and Ryan Garcia. He has trained alongside Garcia previously while in camp in the States.

“So while my head is saying it will be a Tank win, my heart is saying Garcia,” Tszyu said. “And I really do believe this fight could go either way.

“If Ryan is able to stay on distance, move a little bit when Tank attacks, I feel like he’ll be able to pick up rounds, eventually win a decision.

“But I also see Tank being able to pull the trigger, too.

“He’s a slow starter, can take time to read opponents and isn’t consistent in rounds, fighting in spurts.

“But it’s also in those spurts he can get the job done. And if Tank finds that opening, yeah, game over.

“If he wins, it will be by knockout.”

Tszyu went on to praise Garcia for his knowledge of boxing history, including his famous father Kostya.

“Ryan’s knowledge of boxing history, that really surprised me,” Tszyu continued. “He’s a real student of the game, really knows his fights.

“For example, you wouldn’t think someone that age would know a lot about my father. But he knew everything, man.

“It really surprised me.

“I remember we were talking about the left hook. That’s his favourite punch and Ryan was talking about (throwing it) like a whip.

“You don’t have to hit it hard, just sort of touch them on the side of the temple.

“They were just chats that only boxing people would understand, I guess. But he really is just a good bloke.”

Tszyu added: “Tank has the better resume, has fought better opponents. He has more experience, more high calibre fights, but stylistically this fight really could go either way.”