Here is a message from WBA Super-Middleweight Champion Mikkel Kessler ahead of his November 21 Super Six World Boxing Classic clash with Andre Ward:
I have been in Sacramento for one week now and so far everything is working out the way it should. The training facilities are great – and I am also very happy about the level of my sparring partners in the ring. I truly believe that the level of the sparring is one of the key elements for a good performance and proper preparation. The more your sparring resembles your actual opponent, the better the chance that you will actually beat him in the ring.
Previously in my career I have experienced some bad sparring partners before important bouts – fighters who didn’t have the skills in the ring. Therefore my team and I have worked hard on finding some tough fighters with similar boxing skills and tactics as Andre Ward. Fortunately Otis Griffin, Eric Regan and Mike Alexander have so far shown really good skills in the ring – and they have all been great sparring partners.
On top of that, two of them have been sparring with Ward during the last couple of years – hopefully their input from their training sessions with him will give me and my coaches a valuable tactical idea about the fighter Andre Ward.
I would love to tell you a little bit about Sacramento but to be honest I have not had the time to explore the city as a tourist yet. So far I dedicate all my time to training, eating and resting. Hopefully the last week before the fight in San Francisco will give me an opportunity to discover the American culture and the great views of the city.
At the moment I am working on attending an American sports event, like a NFL or NBA game.
Experience has taught me that it is important to occupy your brain with something different than boxing when you are not in the gym – that makes your concentration in the ring even better. Talk to you soon!