Sport: Samoan-born Alex Leapai ready for title shot
Samoan-born boxer Alex Leapai is backing himself to knock out Ukrainian heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko when the two go head to head in a world title fight in Germany this weekend.
The Samoan-born boxer Alex Leapai says he's never been as well prepared for a fight as he is for Sunday's world heavyweight bout against Ukrainian Wladimir Klitschko.
Klitschko hasn't lost for a decade and will put six titles on the line in Germany.
Leapai told Vinnie Wylie he couldn't have asked for a better build-up.
ALEX LEAPAI: This is the first time I've been able to train full-time. Even in my last fight I even was still working and training, and I was fighting for a world title eliminator, but this fight [I'm training] full-time and everything has gone to plan.
VINNIE WYLIE: And of course it's the biggest fight you've ever had - it's probably the most media attention you've ever had- it doesn't get any bigger than this fighting for a world title against one of the Klitschko brothers. What's your mindset going into this?
AL: To be honest I'm just looking at it as just another fight. I don't want to think too hard about it because we're not fighting the fight now. It is the world champion of this era so it's not going to be easy but anything is possible.
VW: And there's obviously a lot of people supporting you: back in Samoa where you were born, in Australia where you are now and came to prominence and of course you spent time in New Zealand as well, so a lot of fans in this part of the world. What motivates you?
AL: I've got an opportunity now to make mum and dad proud. I've done a few bad things in my past: drugs and alcohol and prison and all that stuff. Still today it still haunts me every time I think about mum and dad court when I was sentenced to jail and to see mum and dad break down I still can't get that out of my head. But I've got a chance now to put a smile on my parents proud and not just that, Australia, New Zealand and Samoa [too].
VW: Klitschko has come out and said he's keen to trade punches with you and I think you're pretty keen for that to happen as well. What's your take on that?
AL: I'm pretty keen to trade punches with Klitschko because he's never traded with anybody with the same power as me. Honestly once he feels what I've got I believe his game plan is going to go out the window and he's going to change to another plan. He's going to think twice about trading punches with me.
VW: What does the support of your compatriots, the likes of Paea Wolfgramm from Tonga and David Tua from New Zealand and Samoa, they've come out and in your corner and supported you - what does that mean to you?
AL: I'm just happy they've got the whole Pacific. I'm representing them all and hopefully on April 27 I can make them all proud too.
VW: Is there any element of nerves at all?
AL: No for me there's no nerves at all. I just feel all the hard work is done and it's just a matter of getting in the ring - do what I've been training for the last three months.
VW: If you could write the end of this script how would it end?
AL: Knocking Klitschko out - the great Klitschko. The boy that come out of nowhere and stopped the great Klitschko and they realised he's from this side of the world.
VW: And you believe in your heart of hearts that that's what you're going to do?
AL: That's what we're going to do mate, that's why they call me the Lionheart.
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