Audley Harrison: I Should Have Stayed In Bed Rather Than Face Danny Williams

03.10.06 - Audley Harrison, the former Olympic and Commonwealth champion today admitted that he let factors outside the ring get to him before his fight against Danny Williams.

Talking to Hawksbee and Jacobs on talkSPORT, the UK’s only national commercial speech radio station, Harrison confessed: “When I came to England to fight Danny I was 19 and 0, ranked in all the organisations and two fights away from a world title so I was disappointed from that perspective that I didn’t perform.

“But there were a lot of reasons, a lot of things going on outside the ring where normally I cut them out. Normally I’m a man who can just get in that zone. For the Danny Williams fight I couldn’t get in to the zone. A lot of people have seen me on TV and said ‘he looked frightened, he looked scared.’ But it wasn’t actually Danny or the fight. If I could have stayed in bed that day I should have. All week I was having dramas and I just couldn’t cut it out. It happened to me once before as an amateur, I just couldn’t cut it out. The outside distractions got to me.

“You’re only as good as your last fight and unlike football, where you get to redeem yourself week after week, the British public are only remembering from my last performance and obviously Danny Williams wasn’t a good performance. That’s how I’m being defined at the moment.”

When asked by Hawksbee what he thought of his next opponent, Commonwealth heavyweight champion Matt Skelton, Harrison said: “Skelton brings a lot of heat to the table. He might not be technically the most gifted athlete. But he is definitely all heart, all spirit and he brings a lot of aggression. It will be a tough. But he’s definitely got weaknesses, like I have, and I’ll look to exploit them on the night.

“He’s from the school of hard knocks and I’ve fought guys like that before. They are difficult to overcome. But you can overcome them.

“I could have taken four fights on the under-card in America but Matt Skelton is ranked number 12 in the WBO so this is a quicker route back. It gives me chance to bounce back.

“I’m fighting for my name, fighting to redeem myself so I have a lot on the line. When you have those ingredients you usually get a good fight and with what Matt Skelton brings to table, all guts and heart, it has the ingredients for a great fight for the British public.”

Article posted on 03.10.2006

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