Exclusive Interview: Travis Walker On His Upcoming Fight With Kubrat Pulev

By James Slater: Undefeated pro and former amateur standout Kubrat Pulev, 13-0(6) meets a formidable test in the form of big-hitting Travis ďFreight TrainĒ Walker on October 22nd (on the under-card of Marco Huck's latest WBO cruiserweight title defence). The two big men will clash with the vacant IBF international heavyweight title on the line.

32-year-old Walker, 38-6-1(30) has fought in Germany before; coming off second best on both occasions. However, the 6í4.5,Ē approx 240-pound contender with the ramrod left jab and crushing right hand feels he will win this one.

Very kindly taking the time to speak with me on the upcoming fight, Walker had the following things to say earlier today:

James Slater: Itís always great to speak with you, Travis. Is the fight with Kubrat Pulev a definite for Oct. 22nd in Germany, with the IBF International belt at stake?

Travis Walker: Yes it is. Right, the belt too.

J.S: What do you know about Pulev? He was a fine amateur and some expect big things from him.

T.W: Iíve seen a couple of his fights on You Tube; Iíve been studying him a little bit.

J.S: And are you impressed with him?

T.V: Er, not really. His styleís not that hard to figure out. I think this fight is perfect for me.

J.S: By that you mean he fights upright, in the European way?

T.W: Right. And he wonít be able to keep me away from him. I canít see him avoiding my jab.

J.S: You will be the hardest puncher heíll have faced so far as a pro - will you look to test his chin?

T.W: Oh, yeah, Iím gonna test it! Iím gonna keep testing it, too - until he goes.

J.S: Youíre both big guys at around 6í4Ē and approx 250 - what will you do if he tries to use his physical strength and wrestle with you?

T.W: Well, Iím a little bigger than he is, so I donít think heíll be able to do too much wrestling. Like I say, my jab will keep him in place.

J.S: Youíve won your last four, is that because youíve gone back to boxing more, instead of looking for the big KO?

T.W: Itís partly that, but all the different trainers Iíve had over the years - itís finally starting to click now what I should be doing in there. I am a better boxer now.

J.S: And you had a good win over Darnell Wilson, who went on to beat Juan Carlos GomezÖ

T.W: Right. Itís crazy how he [Wilson] went up higher than me in the rankings though! I donít like that at all!

J.S: The guy you beat is rated above you?!

T.W: Yeah, I donít understand that at all.

J.S: Are you happy to be going back to Germany to fight? I thought you were unlucky not to get the verdict in your fight with Ruslan Chagaev. Did you think you won that fight?

T.W: Oh, I did. I really did. I wasnít happy about that, or the way they treated me over there. But this is my career; this is all I got, so Iíve got to keep pushing. That loss discouraged me, and I know I canít let this fight go into the hands of the judges. I have to KO him early, too, because any thing that happens, theyíll look to stop the fight. I canít allow that to happen either!

J.S: Itís a risky fight for you?

T.W: Very risky.

J.S: Did they offer you the fight or did you go looking for it?

T.W: They offered me the fight, but they only gave me three weeks notice.

J.S: But you were in the gym luckily enough?

T.W: Yes I was, because I knew this would happen - I knew Iíd get a fight after a matter of time, but that when I did theyíd [the opponent] only give me a little bit of notice.

J.S: When will you leave for Germany?

T.W: Next Tuesday, so Iíll get there Wednesday.

J.S: Youíll stir up the division somewhat if you do beat Pulev. What will a win lead to for you do you think?

T.W: I think a win will lead to big things for me. Iím really looking forward to this fight, to the result. Iím gonna throw a bit of everything at him.

J.S: Best wishes for the fight, Travis. And thanks for talking to me.

T.W: Thank you.

Article posted on 13.10.2011

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