Josh Taylor is vowing to knock out challenger Apinun Khongsong as he powers ahead with his dream of unifying the super-lightweight division.
Taylor, who holds the WBA and IBF belts, faces the Thai fighter in London on Saturday in his first fight since beating Regis Prograis in the World Boxing Super Series final 11 months ago.
Both fighters have near identical records with 16 straight wins each, most of them inside the distance.
But the Scot’s old opponents – including the previously unbeaten Prograis, Ivan Baranchyk, Ryan Martin and O’Hara Davies and former world champion Viktor Postol – are far more impressive than the fighters that mandatory challenger Khongsong has faced.
The 24-year-old’s only fight outside of Thailand was in Japan and Taylor has promised him a rude awakening.
“Khongsong is standing in the way of where I want to go so I need to get rid of him,” the Prestonpans fighter said.
“This is his introduction to world boxing and I am going to make it a painful one for him.
“He doesn’t belong at this level and I am a couple of levels above him. I am going to go in there and knock him out on Saturday.
“I have seen a lot I can exploit. He is a very good fighter and very strong, punches with both hands with power, but it is not enough to beat me.
“I am just really looking forward to getting in there on Saturday and putting on a strong performance.”
Taylor’s opponent pledged to meet fire with fire.
“I am very proud to fight Josh Taylor because he is a very good champion,” he said.
“I have prepared very well to fight him on Saturday. The plan is to stop Josh Taylor by knockout.”
Both men weighed in at 9st 13lb 8oz on the eve of the fight.