Commonwealth bantamweight champion Lee McGregor and challenger Scott Allan continued their war of words during Thursday’s press conference ahead of their showdown at #MTKFightNight’s event in Glasgow on Saturday.
Unbeaten McGregor (6-0, 5 KOs) defends his belt in a 12-round contest against countryman Allan (9-3-1) at the Emirates Arena, live on ESPN+ in association with Top Rank and also live on iFL TV.
The two men have had a heated back and forth in recent weeks, and tempers continued to flare when they each fired insults at the other during Thursday’s final presser.
A packed card on Saturday also sees Kieran Smith (14-0, 7 KOs) defending his WBC International Silver super-welterweight title against experienced Ivan Montero (21-3, 9 KOs) in a 10-round bout.
Lewis Benson (11-2, 2 KOs) faces the always-exciting Renald Garrido in a eight-round super-welterweight bout, plus recent world title challenger Muhammad Waseem (8-1) fights John Chuwa (17-3, 9 KOs) over eight rounds in a flyweight contest.
The undercard features the likes of Tommy Phibin (12-0, 4 KOs), Reece McFadden (3-0, 1 KO) and Jack Turner (1-0), and here’s what they all had to say during their final press conference…
McGregor: “I’ve had a great camp for this fight. I’ve prepared hard as usual. I’m glad it’s here, and we’ve both managed to get through the camp with no injuries. I’m ready to go, and I’m going to make sure I keep my Commonwealth belt.
“I respect anyone who gets in the ring and in the opposite corner. He will come to win which is when you see the best of me. I’ll capitalise on it when he tries to attack.
“I’m expecting a tough 12 rounds and I always prepare my body for 12 rounds. Whether it goes that far is a different story. Whatever he brings I’ll be ready for.
“It’s going to be on ESPN+ in America too which is a huge audience and a chance to showcase my skills over there and worldwide. I want them to take notice.
“My mentality is I’ll fight anyone. I’m glad he’s the first one in the way, and he’ll eat his words. He’s getting knocked out on Saturday and I don’t think he even believes he will win.”
Allan: “I’ll be taking the belt home on Saturday. He’s sharp and good at what he does. He’s a great boxer and a great athlete and I’m blessed to share the ring with him on Saturday, but I think he’s overlooking me for the Kash Farooq fight.
“I thought he’d avoid the Scottish fighters and go down the European route, but fair enough he is fighting me, but I’m going to win that belt on Saturday and I’m looking forward to the fight.”
Smith: “I’ll win at all costs. No matter how I look on the night, that’s what will happen. I’ve done three camps back to back now and not had much of a break, so this is a fight that has come around at the right time and it’s my time to step up.”
Benson: “Garrido is a threat. He comes forward and puts in a shift. If I stick to my boxing I should be able to make it easy.
“I’ve moved camps for this fight and have been working on new things, so you’ll see a difference on Saturday. After this fight I want to push on.”
Garrido: “I’m very happy to be here in Scotland with my spirit and aggressive style of boxing. MTK Global is a great promotion so to fight for them is amazing.
“For those judging me, don’t look at my record, as there are a lot of bad decisions on it. On Saturday I will have a great fight and hopefully we won’t need it go to decision.
“Lewis Benson is a great guy and a real warrior. I have big respect for Lewis and after the fight he is my friend, but a fight is a fight.”
McFadden: “I’m smiling as always. I’ve been taking my time in my professional fights and I’ve settled my feet and plant them a bit more, so I’m enjoying the professional ranks.”
Turner: “It’s a big change to the amateurs and I’m asserting myself properly and making sure I perform on the night. It’s going to be a bit different to my debut as I’m going to be more explosive and I’m planning on producing this weekend.”
Lewis Benson faces Renald Garrido
Lewis Benson hopes the recent resurgence of Scottish boxing leads to him securing a title shot in the near future – provided he defeats Renald Garrido when #MTKFightNight returns to Glasgow on Saturday.
Benson (11-2, 2 KOs) takes on experienced Garrido at the Emirates Arena, live on ESPN+ in association with Top Rank and also live on iFL TV. This weekend’s card comes at a time where Scottish boxing is going from strength to strength, and Benson wants to play a part in it.
Benson said: “Scottish boxing is booming right now. We’ve got a lot of great guys coming up and it’s amazing to be a part of it. I can see it getting even better in Scotland because there’s boys knocking on doors very soon for titles and I hope to be one of them.
“If everything goes to plan against Garrido on Saturday, I’d love to challenge for the Commonwealth or British title or one of the Europeans belts next.
“Anyone with a title I’ll love to fight them because I want these big fights. I’d be right up for any of them and I’d be confident of winning.”
Muhammad Waseem vs. John Chuwa
Recent world title challenger Muhammad Waseem is proud to be making his long-awaited return to the ring in Glasgow as he looks to begin his journey back to another crack at world honours. The fight will take place on June 22.
Pakistan hero Waseem (8-1, 6 KOs) faces John Chuwa on a huge #MTKFightNight event at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow, live on ESPN+ in association with Top Rank, and also live on iFL TV.
It’s Waseem’s first fight since his IBF world title bout with Moruti Mthalane last July, and he’s excited to show everybody what he’s learned since re-locating to Scotland and training alongside the likes of Tyrone McKenna, Tyrone McCullagh, Paddy Barnes, Sam Maxwell and Sean McComb.
Waseem said: “I’ve loved training in the build up to this fight. The Tyrones, Sean, Sam and Paddy are very good guys. We train together and we talk together.
“They’ve become very good friends of mine. They support me and I support them. We are one team and one family. They’re very nice guys.
“I believe I’ll fight again for a world title late this year or in early 2020. I’ll always be ready for another world title shot.
“I have many supporters in my country. They’re all messaging me on social media asking how they can watch the fight. They’re so keen to watch it live and it’s great they’ll all be able to tune in on iFL TV. I tell them all they can watch it there on YouTube!
I also have friends in America. A lot of people know me there because I was at Mayweather’s gym for three years. They’ll all be tuning in on ESPN+ too. I’m so proud to be fighting on these platforms.
I fought on Manny Pacquiao’s card last year and it was big exposure for me. Now, I’m known Stateside and I’m excited to be back on a big American TV platform to remind them of what I can do.”
Waseem is part of a huge #MTKFightNight event in Glasgow, with the main event seeing Lee McGregor put his Commonwealth bantamweight title on the line against Scottish rival Scott Allan.
The card also features Kieran Smith defending his WBC International title against Ivan Montero, Lewis Benson taking on Renald Garrido, plus many more.