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Hungry Sunny Edwards says he has returned to his roots ahead of Adrian Curiel clash this weekend

Sunny Edwards. Photo credit: MTK Global

Former IBF flyweight champion Sunny Edwards 20-1 (4) has parked his ego at the door ahead of his fight against ex-IBF junior flyweight champion Adrian Curiel 24-5-1 (5) at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona on Saturday night.

The 28-year-old Brit has admitted he got a bit too big for his boots after claiming the IBF belt with a near-perfect performance against South African Moruti Mthalane 40-3 (26) three years ago.

Four successful title defences followed before he was brought down with a thud. WBO flyweight champion Jesse ‘Bam’ Rodriguez 19-0 (12) busted up his face and battered him into submission in nine rounds in their unification bout last December.

It was a humbling experience for the outgoing Brit.

“I might have more of a chip on my shoulder,” said Edwards, who will box Curiel in the main support bout to Rodriguez’s challenge to Ring Magazine and WBC super flyweight champion Juan Francisco Estrada. The card will be broadcast live on DAZN.

“I think I’ve lost a bit of complacency that I was getting. The main difference of my mindset into the fight, since I was a world champion, I lost the fear and gained an ego.

“Going away for a training camp, taking two or three sparring partners, taking my coach and another coach, a nutritionist; yes, there’s X, Y, Z of cost for that, but it will always be worth it.”

Mexican Curiel, 25, shot to fame with his upset second-round knockout of South Africa’s Sivenathi Nontshinga 13-1 (10) to claim the IBF 108-pound title in November.

Curiel didn’t fair as well in the rematch. After starting fast and emptying both chambers, Nontshinga finished over the top of him, stopping him in 10.

Edwards rates both boxers. But he also believes he is much better than both of them.

“He’s a former world champion just like me,” Edwards said of Curiel. “His fight against Nontshinga in Monte Carlo that he won, he was aggressive he started very fast, he started hurting Nontshinga early, and he got him out of there. It was an impressive win.

“In the rematch in his hometown, he tried the same but this time he was exhausted by round six or seven and I wasn’t too surprised when the tide started turning.

“Anyone that tries to set the pace like that and hasn’t really got God given engines where they don’t really slow down, they’re going to get found out and that’s what happened.

“I genuinely think I could beat Curiel and Nontshinga on the same night. Is he dangerous? Of course. Everyone is. Was I massively impressed? I feel like I’ve been in the ring with far better and I’ve beaten far better. So, it’s a great opportunity for me to put on an impressive performance.”