Exclusive Interview: Alexander Frenkel Talks About His Upcoming Fight With EBU Cruiserweight Champ Enzo Maccarinelli
by James Slater - Unbeaten cruiserweight contender Alexander Frenkel, 22-0(17) will clash with European 200-pound champion Enzo Maccarinelli next (Sauerland Event, Frenkel's promoters, have reportedly won the purse bid for the bout) and the Ukrainian-born 25-year-old has already started training ahead of his big opportunity.
Article posted on 04.06.2010
Seen by many good judges as a potential world champion, Frenkel will be one tough challenger for the recently rejuvenated Welshman who once held the WBO cruiserweight title. "Big Macc" won the EBU title in fine style, taking out Russia's Alexander Kotlobay inside a round in April, but now he must become the first man to defeat the gifted Frenkel if he is to keep hold of his crown. Very kindly giving me the following interview, during which he gave his thoughts on Maccarinelli and the upcoming fight, the 6'1" Frenkel had the following things to say:
James Slater: Thanks for taking the time to speak with me, Alexander. The fight with Maccarinelli is next for you, you must be very excited about this big fight?
Alexander Frenkel: Yeah, the fight is the plan for me, and it's 99-percent finished, it's nearly finished. I'm not sure yet where the fight will be, I think it may be in England - England or Germany..
J.S: I read that the fight would be in Germany, but you don't mind - you'll fight Maccarinelli anywhere?
A.F: I would like to fight him in England, I really want to fight in England. I've never been there and I'd love to see it. I like the English fans. I told my trainer, I hope the fight is in England. But the fight being in Germany - I guess I can call Germany my home, my second home - this would be okay too.
J.S: As you know, Alexander, you are 22-0(17) now. You feel you are ready for a big puncher like Maccarinelli?
A.F: Yeah, I feel I am ready for everybody. I'm ready no matter who, as long as I train for two months. I get in great shape and I am ready for anybody. I like Maccarinelli, he is a good fighter - strong. I've seen his fights, not all of them, but I know how he fights. I need to see more, though, to be able to study him properly. I will learn his strong side and his not so strong side. Every fighter can be beaten, you must find the key for each fighter, to be able to beat him.
J.S: Did you see Enzo's last fight, when he won the EBU title in Russia?
A.F: Yes, I saw that.
J.S: Were you impressed?
A.F: I was not so impressed. I don't think a 1st-round win was so good for him. That never gave him the chance to know if he's remade himself after his losses. One round and it was all over. It was no test for him, and I think he needed more rounds, more of a test, before his fight with me. But he was very powerful and I'm glad for him.
J.S: Is it fair to say Maccarinelli will be, on paper at least, the biggest puncher you'll have yet faced?
A.F: I really don't know. I've never been too impressed by punchers. I have sparred big, heavy guys, punchers, in the gym, and it doesn't bother me. I will need to feel his power before I can say if he is so powerful. But for that he has to catch me, to test me. But I really don't care about power. I just have a feeling, I can take anybody's punch and stay on my feet. I don't know for sure, but I have this feeling. I've never been in trouble in the ring since I was a young boy, and I don't care about being hit in sparring.
J.S: You have started training already?
A.F: Yes, for around two weeks already. I've done no sparring yet, but I have been training hard. I always train hard and I feel great and I feel strong. I love to train in the summertime - it is so beautiful, to run and to swim. I love this part of my life. I enjoy all of my life.
J.S: Do you have any idea when the fight will go ahead?
A.F: Maybe late August or maybe September.
J.S: And how do you see the fight going, what kind of fight do you think it will be?
A.F: I have a lot of choices for how I will fight this fight. I can fight going forwards, I can fight going back, I can counter-punch. I can do everything. I don't know yet how I will decide to fight this fight. I will be ready for 12-rounds, but it could end at any time. We both can punch. The fight will be exciting.
J.S: Some people say, because of how he was stopped by Denis Lebedev and by Ola Afolabi, that Maccarinelli has a "weak chin." Do you think about that at all?
A.F: I don't know about that really. Okay, he was down, but now he is back - and that makes a man stronger. That's past now [his stoppage defeats] and I will not even think about that. We all have our bad days. I have great respect for Maccarinelli for how he has done this [come back].
J.S: This is a big fight for you, as you know. Looking ahead, if you win the European title, will you look to defend it as many times as you can and then go for a world title? I know you have to get this fight out of the way first.
A.F: This European title fight is a big thing for me, a very big thing. I can't look past it, but of course I want to become champion of the world; but I must win this first. Afterwards, if a chance to fight for a world title comes, I will take any chance, any time - and I will fight anywhere. I do have a feeling that I am ready for anyone now.
J.S: It's been a pleasure speaking with you once again, Alexander. For my last question: you had six fights last year and you've had one this year already - that's quite a work rate! Do you not feel the need for a rest? You have so much energy?
A.F: I say to my trainer, let me fight every week (laughs). I rest for two weeks between a fight, when I do anything I want, when I eat what I want and do as little as I want. Then, when it is time to train again, I am ready. I love training and I love all other parts of my life.
J.S: Well, best wishes for the European title fight, and thanks again for your time.
A.F: It's been nice speaking with you. I'm sorry my English was so bad - I hope it gets better!
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