David Light Ready To “Shock Everyone” Against Lawrence Okolie

New Zealand boxer David Light

New Zealand’s David Light (20-0, 12KO) is looking to make history this weekend when he takes on reigning WBO Cruiserweight Champion Lawrence Okolie (18-0 14KO).

The undefeated Light is looking to become the first New Zealand fighter to hold the title and feels confident about upsetting the odds when the pair square off inside the AO Arena in Manchester on Sat. March 25.

Fighting in another man’s backyard is nothing new for Light. He earned his mandatory shot after winning a decision over the USA’s Brandon Glanton in Florida last December.

Light’s war of attrition with Glanton sharply contrasted with his earlier trip to the “Sunshine State” when he knocked out the previously undefeated Cuban-American Anthony Martinez in the opening round of their 10-round bout.

These experiences have helped shape Light, and while Okolie presents a different challenge from Glanton and Martinez, the 31-year-old is not overawed about the task that awaits him.

“You know, a lot of fighters, they just fight in their own country, and then when they have to travel, they’re in places they haven’t been before. I feel like I have [been to those place before], “Light says, speaking to Boxing Daily.

“I feel like I have done what [George] Kambosos did. He was traveling. It gave him that edge in the Teofimo Lopez fight because he had done it already, all of the traveling and won those decisions overseas before that fight.”

At 6 “5, Okolie literally and figuratively towers over the cruiserweight division, and with 14 of his 18 wins coming via knockout, the British fighter has the power to stop anyone who steps into the ring with him.

However, Light feels that many of Okolie’s previous opponents have come into the fight focusing more on their opponent’s strengths than what they need to do.

“I think they’ve got their pacing wrong,and I think they’ve given him too much credit, thought too much that he is too big and all that stuff. I mean, they’ve tailored their game around that. I think if you try and spar someone like that [Okolie], you’re going to have a difficult day,” he explains.

“You got to have a go, get into it and rip into it, and that’s what we’re going to do. I think we’re going to shock everyone with that.”

Light trains out of West Auckland’s Peach Boxing. The gym is home to four top-ten-ranked fighters, including Light. Issac Peach, the gym’s head trainer, has spent hours studying Okolie and is confident that he and his fighter have the right game plan to take home the belt this weekend.

“It’s not to compete. It’s not to be close. We’re coming to smash Okolie,” Peach says.

Light could have taken this fight on relatively short notice in 2020 but instead chose to have patience and work to his schedule rather than anybody else’s.

“We got offered this fight before, and we didn’t take it. We wanted to have a proper go where we’re going to go to win it. So that’s why we got to the mandatory position, fought Glanton first, and now we’re here. So, you know, we’re in a much better position than most people have been in the past, so it makes it way more special.”

Most of the media predict an Okolie victory; however, Light and his team have little regard for what the pundits say. From day one, the plan has always been to win a world title, and anything aside from that is simply noise waiting to be blocked out.

“I don’t know if we care what people think; I think that’s part of our strength,” Light declares.

The city streets of Manchester are a world away from Auckland, and as the countdown begins for what will be the biggest fight of his career, Light is relishing the build-up to the opportunity that he has spent the last five years working towards.

“All the hard works’ done, I was worried, six weeks, eight weeks ago, I was really fretting because that’s when you’ve got the time to make a difference to the fight. But at the moment, all the prep has been done,” Light says.

“The outcome of this fight is locked in, in my mind. So just, yeah, enjoy it.”

How do you see this fight playing out? Let us know below.

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