Jason Cunningham is expecting Zolani Tete to pose a dangerous threat early on during their clash in Wembley on Saturday.
Cunningham puts his Commonwealth and IBF International super bantamweight titles on the line against former two-weight world champion, Tete on the undercard of Joe Joyce’s clash with Christian Hammer at the OVO Arena, live on BT Sport.
‘The Iceman’ admits he has paid close attention to the seasoned South African ever since he stopped Paul Butler in 2015 and is expecting the 34-year-old, who has 22 knockouts from his 29 victories to be tricky, especially in the early rounds.
“He’s been there and he’s done it,” Cunningham told proboxing-fans.com at Thursday’s press conference.
“He’s been a phenomenal fighter.
“[I] watched him a few years back when he came here and fought Paul Butler, [I’ve] been a fan since then and now it’s me all these years later getting in with him.
“He’s a brilliant fighter, cannot underestimate him, I’ve not underestimated him, but I just feel it’s my time.
“He will be dangerous early. He does come out dangerous early.
“He’s been a bully in the past, but a good bully, but they’re against a lot smaller fighters.
“He’s against somebody on Saturday who’s the same size as him if not physically bigger on the night.
“So, yeah obviously I’ve got to be aware of the punch power and stuff like that, but he’s a skilled boxer as well, but then so has he because it’s firing back.
“I’m not a little flyweight who he’s going to knock over, so it works both ways.”
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The Doncaster man is on a rich vein of form with victories over the likes of Gamal Yafai and Brad Foster, landing himself British and European titles.
The 32-year-old, who has six losses on his slate, has won seven on the bounce and believes his career is finally taking shape.
“It’s years and years of work,” he added.
“You learn from your mistakes in the past.
“Obviously any defeats I’ve come back from them and perseverance and all that and just never giving up and always believing and eventually its paid off and I’ve got here.”
Watch the full interview with Jason Cunningham below: