Even Chisora and Fury can't put me down, says Cleverly

18/04/2013 10:45

WBO light heavyweight champion Nathan Cleverly (25-0) says sparring sessions with heavyweights have strengthened his body and belief before his latest title defence.

The unbeaten Welshman faces mandatory challenger Robin Krasniqi (39-2) at Wembley Arena this Saturday, live on BoxNation.

And to vary his training, Cleverly has been testing his chin by taking shots from Dereck Chisora and Tyson Fury.

"It's nice to be taken out of your comfort zone and face guys that are heavier then you and who can push you around," said Cleverly. "It's good not to have things your own way and these guys test your chin and how you respond.

Sometimes I stand and trade with the heavyweights. It's macho, you could say it's abit silly, but that's my mentality. I love to go to war sometimes.

I have a granite chin and have never been put down, but the heavyweights really test my chin. It's a challenge but it gives me confidence when I take their shots.

My chin is one of my greatest strengths, which is good because if your going to get punched for a living you need that. In an ideal world you learn how to avoid punches, so I've got to learn how not to be reckless and make it easier for myself."

Both Chisora and Fury fight this weekend, the former takes on Hector Alfredo Avila on the Wembley bill while the latter makes his US debut against Steve Cunningham at Madison Square Garden Theatre.

Cleverly-Krasniqi was originally  due to co-feature on March 16 with Ricky Burns' lightweight unification fight with Miguel Vazquez however that was called off when Vazquez picked up a virus and since then Burns has left Frank Warren's promotions.

Like Cleverly, Krasniqi is 26-year-old and the Germany-based Kosovan will arrive on a 38-fight winning streak, having started his career by losing two of his first three bouts.