Exactly one month before the “world title” match with Peter Quillin (30-0) in Washington, the best Czech professional boxer Lukáš Konečný met with journalists at a press conference in Prague which was gathered by his stable SES Boxing and Profiboxing.cz.
What was said there? The main thing was that this 35-year-old fighter from Ústí nad Labem said that the fight the undefeated American boxer with Cuban roots would be the last one in his career.
“I’ve been saving the best for last. I want this fight to be my last. The result is not important. I’ve been doing this sport at top level for more than twenty years. Now it is time to leave,” said Konečný who has fought in fifty-four fights during his professional career. During his amateur career, he participated in more than 300 duels.
Konečný’s coach Dzemski and Christof Hawerkamp (a press agent of the stable SES) approved the decision. But then Konečný finally confirmed that thanks to the option of the Golden Boy Promotion stable, which is the main organiser of the gala, there is a chance that he may return one day.
“What can possibly change my decision? I have three conditions. I must win, I must be healthy and I must be given an incredibly big amount of money for the future fight,” said Konečný with smile. When he translated his words to German for his coach Dzemski, everyone in the Harley Davidson Center in Prague, where almost twenty journalists working for newspapers and television were present, started to laugh. This Czech fighter is really looking forward to the last duel of his career. “I am considered as an outsider. It is not only about a victory. I am not under pressure,” said Konečný for whom this will be the fourth title match.
Konečný lost with a Ukrainian Sergej Dzinziruk in 2008 and with a Russian Zaurbek Bajsangurov in 2012, but he defeated a French boxer Salim Larbi two months ago. For the first time he is going to fight in category of middleweight boxers to which he was replaced after his loss with Bajsangurov a year ago.
Konečný last appeared in a boxing ring last July in Dresden where he defeated Moez Fhim from France and so he retained the European WHO Middleweight title.
Then he didn’t compete because he had some problems with his sight. His eyes are still not perfect, but he believes that it won’t have an impact on the fight.
“At least, I hope that it won’t have an impact on me. It wasn’t a problem while training, we will see how it will be while sparring,” said Konečný who has visited many doctors in the Czech Republic and in Germany. “Each of the doctors told me that it was OK and that I had keen sight,” he said and smiled a bit.
However, he knows that the situation is not ideal. “From time to time it happens to me that I can’t see clearly,” confessed Konečný but then he added: “Right here, right now I can see you clearly!”
The reigning European champion is training intensively and he is taking part in some friendly matches next week. “Lukáš is going to be preparing in Ústí nad Labem and in Germany. We are going to spent a week at a training camp in Slovenia and then we are planning to leave for the USA about nine or ten days before the fight,” said a German coach Dirk Dzemski.
He believes as well that Konečný can surprise Quillin. “Quillin has a precise and strong punch, he can move really fast. On the other hand, his psyche is said not to strong. In his last five fights, he faced left-handed boxers. And he has never fought against someone like Lukáš. His performance in the duel with Gabriel Rosada was nothing extra, so anything could happen,” said Dzemski.
“Quillin is the world champion, he has won all the thirty matches. And what’s more, the match takes place in his home country. It definitely will not be easy but we think that he has never fought against someone like me. I believe that he will be surprised by style. If everything goes well, I can surprise him, I think. I have a chance and I believe that I believe I can win the belt,” expressed Konečný who was born in Brno.
His manager Ulf Steinforth, who has been co-operating with Lukáš for fourteen years and who couldn’t have been present at the conference because of other duties sent a message from Magdeburg to Prague: “No-one deserves to achieve success as much as Lukáš does. As I have told him before in Brno: You will win the title one day!”
Was he right? We will find out in a month! And we have a great news for Czech fans – not only Profiboxing
.cz but also Steinforth himself (whose stable has a licence for streaming in Europe) hold talks with the Czech television about live streaming from Washington. The decision will be made by the end of the week.
Photos: Filip Škeřík