Andre Berto: Exclusive Interview

Andre Berto03.08.06 - By Ryan Songalia: I was able to catch up with undefeated 2004 Olympian Andre Berto at the Crunch Gym in the heart of New York City. He spoke about his training and preperation for his upcoming fight against Roberto Valencia on the undercard of Quartey-Forrest.

Ryan Songalia: How has training for your upcoming fight?

Andre Berto: Training has been tremendous, weíre training real hard and staying focused. All the progress that weíve been looking for is coming along on time. I canít really complain at all, just staying focused and going straight ahead.

Songalia: Who have you been sparring with to get ready for Saturday?

Berto: For preparation of this fight here, Iíve got some local guys from the gym that Iíve really been working with. Sometimes I go up and spar with my man Winky Wright and guys like that. Iím really just using regular guys from the gym..

Songalia: Is this your first fight in New York?

Berto: No, actually I started off in New York. I had my first few fights right here in New York at the Manhattan Center. I havenít been here in awhile, so itís fun coming back.

Songalia: So you donít anticipate having any jitters fighting in a big city?

Berto: Nah, not at all. I have a lot of friends right here from New York. Itís almost like a second home for me. So, Iím just excited and ready to put on a good performance.

Songalia: Do you know anything about your opponent?

Berto: My opponent, Roberto Valencia, heís a tough, rugged veteran. He had over 50 or 60 fights. Heís just going to be a real tough opponent to try and get out of there. Heís well experienced, so I;m looking to just go a few rounds hopefully and get some good work in.

Songalia: Many recent former Olympians have been rushed too fast and have burned out early as a result. Do you think you could be susceptible to that as well?

Berto: I donít think so. I have a real good team around me, one of the best management and promotion teams out. Weíre just taking our time right now, just picking and choosing what we want to do. Just taking our time with it actually. So I donít even think so.

Songalia: Do you have anything you would like to say to boxing fans all over the world?
Berto: Everybody continue to stay tuned, continue to watch me. Iím going to continue putting on great shows for you. Itís the new generation, so everybody stay tuned.

Ryan Songalia is a syndicated columnist. If you have any feedback or questions, my email address is . My Myspace is . My Friendster is

Article posted on 03.08.2006

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