New Zealand heavyweight, Junior Fa (19-0 10 KO), could soon be returning to the squared circle for a blockbuster clash with fellow Kiwi Joseph Parker (27-2, 21KO), if recent media reports are accurate.
The undefeated 30-year-old's last outing was in Nov. 2019, when he defeated the USA's Devin Vargas via unanimous decision to retain his WBO Oriental Interim Heavyweight Title and also lock in his No.6 WBO ranking.
Fa's promoter, Lou DiBella, has stated that whoever wins between Fa and Parker will be in line for a 'massive fight' when they next compete. It would be fair to say that if Fa-Parker goes ahead, it will be Fa's most high profile fight to-date, attracting worldwide coverage.
This week The Ali Channel sat down with Fa for an hour-long interview that touched on topics ranging from how he got into boxing to raising a child with Autism, as well as training with Deontay Wilder. It is one of the most in-depth interviews Fa has given and a must view for NZ fight fans, wanting to learn more about the man who may soon be knocking on the door of a world title shot.
Boxing aficionados, in particular, will be interested in hearing Fa breakdown why he decided to take his skills to City Kickboxing.
" At that time, City Kickboxing didn't have any full-time boxers,' Fa said.
"I kind of went with my team, and we were discussing different places to go, and then City Kickboxing came up, and then I was like I know it's not a boxing background, but I know the guys there. I know Eugene [Bareman], I know Doug [Viney], and we come from the same gym back in the day, so I know what they're going to teach is good.
"We kind of knew that it was going to be, not like a risk but more of just a different look, because I am a professional boxer going into a kickboxing gym...but these guys are striking geniuses. Eugene and Doug, both of them balance each other out. They have two different approaches with their striking one's a lot more aggressive; one's a lot more calculated," Fa exclaimed.
"You also have Tristam [Apikatoa], who's in Mangere and he comes in every now and then, and he's also another genius, and he brings in his own flavor into the gym as well."
Fa went on to also discuss some of the differences he sees when comparing US boxers with NZ boxers. Interestingly it appears the difference is less to do with talent and training and more to do with the mental approach fighters have to the sport.
"They are different in the States. I was trying to compare the training we have here with compared to there, and there's actually not much difference. So for myself, I see that we train a lot harder in the gym at CKB. So why is there a bit of a difference when it comes to a fighter from the States?
"I just nailed it down to their confidence and their belief in themselves. Whereas in New Zealand we get a bit more humble here and we're scared to overstep certain lines, but for certain things, we don't boast that much. So I think that kind of allows us to pull ourselves back in and pull our own ego back into ourselves.
Whereas over there, they just embrace their strengths. Their mental game is different. They are just totally confident and totally believe in themselves a little bit arrogant, but I think it plays in their favour."
Hopefully Fa will soon be getting his chance to display his full range of skills in what will be one of this country's biggest boxing fights in recent history.
You can check the full interview out below.
Written by Michael Clifton
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