Physically superior Wlad admits to nerves
Wladimir Klitschko weighed in almost 30lbs heavier than Jean-Marc Mormeck ahead of their clash in Dusseldorf on Saturday, but the heavyweight champion admits he would still prefer to be fighting a bigger opponent.
The Ukrainian puts his WBO, IBF and WBA titles on the line against the Frenchman on Saturday night, aiming for a 14th straight victory.
Klitschko tipped the scales ahead of the contest at 244lbs, while his opponent – who will be making only his fourth appearance as a heavyweight – weighed in at 216lbs. Despite his obvious weight advantage, and the fact he is taller and boasts a longer reach, Klitschko says he feels uncomfortable when squaring up to smaller fighters.
“It’s a tough job to fight shorter guys,” he told boxingscene.com. “It’s a lot of energy for bigger guys. People say the weight is the advantage, but it’s not that much of an advantage. It’s a smaller target to hit, so you have to be precise, like surgery. Bigger targets are easier to hit, they’re slower and I can work with bigger guys.”
In the pre-fight build-up, Klitschko has likened Mormeck to Mike Tyson, and the 35-year-old says he will have to get on the front foot early against his squat, powerful foe.
“Jean-Marc will keep coming forward and throwing punches,” he said. “He is a great athlete in tremendous shape. I’m not going to wait too long to get my attack off the ground.”
Emanuel Steward, Klitschko’s trainer, is expecting his charge to experience a difficult night’s work and says his fighter is in a “no-win situation” with the fans.
“We’re fighting a style unlike anything Wladimir has had to face. Mormeck has a bob-and-weave style, one of the most difficult styles to prepare for. One of the biggest problems I’ve always had with my tall fighters is the head movement.
“I understand the fans’ opinion but style wise it’s not going to be that type of fight [a mismatch]. According to all of the experts, if the fight goes more than three or four rounds it was a terrible performance. If Wladimir knocks him out in a minute, it was expected. We’re going in to this fight facing a no-win situation.”