Boxing


Jamie Arthur on preparations for his British Title Clash with Martin ‘Mac Man’ Lindsay

by Brendan Galbraith - Welshman Jamie Arthur will challenge Martin “Mac Man” Lindsay for the British Featherweight Title on Friday 19th March 2010. Arthur, who retired from boxing from 2005-2008, has resurrected his career with seven wins on the bounce, most notably, an impressive win in a British Title Eliminator against, then unbeaten 14-0, Akaash Bhatia. Arthur, spoke to me today about his rejuvenated return to the ring and his preparations ahead of his British Title clash with Lindsay.

How is your training going?

I am just having my last sparring session today. No matter what comes on the night, from my end there is not going to be any excuses, I am not going to say my hand was bad or my camp was bad - everything has gone well. I am in great physical shape, mentally I feel great. This is the biggest opportunity of my professional career so I want to clasp this with both hands. I am intending to go out there and have one hell of a fight.

What guys have you been sparring with?

I have an array of different sparring partners. I have been up to Scotland sparring with Ricky Burns – who is preparing for a World Title fight and Jason Cook and Matthew Edmonds. I have Lee Haskins coming over today – so I have had an array of different sparring partners. The fact of the matter is that Martin Lindsay is a great fighter, so I can’t just go in with a game plan that I feel that he is going to come in with. I need to prepare to adapt to all different styles – hence the reason I haven’t just gone with one type of style (in training).

How would you describe your boxing style?

I am an adaptive fighter. I am a good box-fighter – I can box in the inside and outside. I can go toe-to-toe. I try to be exciting. At this level you have to be adaptive, as every fighter at this level is going to be good, so you have to be adaptive to try and nullify the work that your opponent is going to do. I am an intelligent guy and I try to take that into the ring as well – to use my boxing ability to set up the punches that I want to work inside. I am not a one-punch knock-out artist, but I can box a little bit and I have got a lot of grit and determination. Come March 19th – it’s going to be a great fight.

Jamie, you had a break from boxing from 2005-2008, but since you have came back you have had seven straight wins including a good win over Akaash Bhatia. What has been the main difference between Jamie Arthur pre-2005 and post-2008 – when you returned to the ring?

Totally different. Before I had the break I was just relying on boxing as a full-time wage – wasn’t fighting as regular as I like and I was gaining debt. I was not enjoying the sport. For the last 8 months of my last career (pre-2005) I should have just retired earlier. But I hung in there I had a lot of expectations – people expecting me to do this because I had won the Commonwealth Games Gold Medal. People were patting me on the back saying you were good, you are doing this and doing that. But behind the scenes people don’t see all the financial hardship that comes along when following your dreams as a boxer. At that time I had no money in the bank to pay my bills so always worried about where the next pound was coming from rather than winning my next fight. Now, I’ve taken time out to assess my situation, I’m now fighting to fulfil my legacy rather than make money. All my cards are on the table. I’ve worked hard and I have left nothing to chance so the rest is down to God’s will on fight night.”

“I had two losses against Haider Ali (TKO 3) and Harry Ramogoadi (TKO 5) – so at that time that wasn’t the Jamie Arthur that you seen boxing at the Commonwealth Games or of my resurrected career. I am better than that. Now, since I have come back, I am enjoying my boxing again, I am enjoying the sport and working extremely hard.”

“I am not relying on boxing as a full-time wage. This is something that I am doing because I enjoy doing. I always felt that went I came back that I would be able to fight for and win a British Title. So I have talked the talk – now I need to walk the walk on March 19th.”

Arthur also confirmed that if he didn’t win against Lindsay that he would retire:

“If I lose I will retire straight away – I will have achieved everything that I have set out to achieve – so I will go on to another chapter of my life. But, at the end of the day there is two ways this is going to go. I am either going to become the British Champion or I am going to become a fan of the British Champion – in Martin Lindsay. So on March 19th – this is the whole reason whey I have came back out of my retirement – to fight for the British Title and as I said I have done everything I possibly can in order for me to be in the best shape of my life. I have sacrificed everything, I have going through the hardship, mentally and physically, I am in the right place. So, I am ready to put on a great performance.”

So, have you got many supporters coming to fight?

I have personally sold about 70 tickets. But we have got people coming from all over the UK. This is one of the highly anticipated fights of the year so far. So there is going to be fans coming from London, Liverpool, Manchester and Scotland, so they are the guys that are just coming down without buying the tickets off me. It is going to be a great night.

Arthur is a 4/1 outsider with the bookmakers and is clearly respectful towards Martin Lindsay’s boxing talents. However, in the culmination of his boxing revival, Arthur will be aiming to leverage all of his experience, skill and prolonged training to realise his ultimate boxing ambition – to be crowned a British Title Champion. Standing in that path is Belfast’s unbeaten Martin Lindsay. It should be a good fight.

Tickets are priced at £35 and £80 (ringside) and are available at www.frankmaloney.com

Article posted on 12.03.2010



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