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Q&A: Kali Meehan

By Ray Wheatley–World of Boxing

Australia’s world rated heavyweight contender Kali Meehan will clash with former world champion Ruslan Chagaev for the WBA #1 position soon and is confident he will have his hand raised after their bout. Meehan talks to Fightnews and states that Chagaev will have his hands full when they meet, he has seen the strong and weak points in his opponents arsenal, that he will be looking for a KO, he is not worried that the fight will be in Chagaev’s home turf and that he will crush the former world champion so he can give his family the life they deserve.

Ruslan Chageav has said he is ready for you when you clash soon over twelve rounds for the WBA #1 position. Are you ready and confident of victory?

I’m ready to meet Ruslan Chagaev. It has been a while since I last fought because I’ve had seven fights fall through recently due to no fault of my own. I understand Chageav is confident of victory because he is a former world champion and I expect nothing less from him, but I am very, very confident that I have the goods to beat him on May 22nd.

Chagaev holds a win over Nikolay Valuev. Will he find you to be a more difficult opponent being 6’5″ as well as faster and also a better puncher than the Russian giant?

I congratulate Valuev on all he’s done with his career, but I have always said he is very limited in skills and his ring generalship department. Chageav has done well in handing the giant his first loss, he trained well for the occasion and came out on top. I will not be plodding and following Chagaev around the ring like Valuev. I am a faster boxer with better footwork. I believe my punches are more explosive than Valuev’s. Chagaev will definitely have his hands full.

Chagaev was recently defeated by Wladimir Klitschko. Did you see this fight? Please give me your thoughts on Chagaev’s weak points in the ring.

I did see the fight against Klitschko. I noticed several weak points Chageav has and also some strengths, but I do believe he is highly overrated and very beatable. I must be at my best and capitalize his weaknesses in the ring. I am not at all underestimating him, but I will defeat him.

You have shown that you have KO power in both hands when you scored impressive stoppage victories including knockout victory over Davarryl Williamson in 2007. Are you looking for a knockout win against Chagaev? Has Klitschko softened him up?

My last loss was to Rahman in 2004 where I had an injury and lost to the better man. After that fight, I promised myself that I will go for a KO every time I step into the ring, and every fight since then I have delivered a KO. Although the opposition that I have faced were not championship level, except Davarryl Williamson where I only had 9 days notice. Nothing has changed except that I have time to be in the best shape of my life. I will still be going for the KO. I will be looking to end this fight every chance that I get.

Universum is the promoter of Meehan-Chagaev and you will be fighting on his home turf. Will this give him the advantage?

He will have all the advantages, everything! But, there are only two of us doing battle in the ring. I do not want to leave anything in any judges’ hands. I promise one thing to all of the boxing fans: I will give this man a war that he will never forget!

You have worked as a sparring partner for David Haye, the WBA champion. Are you confident of beating Haye if you defeat Chagaev? Your thoughts.

David Haye is a very good fighter and I like the way he leaves it all in the ring. Although he didn’t against Valuev, he did what he needed to win. However I still do think he is a cruiserweight with a suspect chin. My mind, heart and soul is on the WBA heavyweight title and I am so grateful for this life changing opportunity that I now have, but I can not and will not look past Chageav.

You have waited a long time to get this opportunity after being rated WBA #1 for several months only to see WBA #2 John Ruiz to get the shot at the championship. Has that been frustrating? Will you take out this frustration on Chagaev when you clash at a time and venue yet to be named?

The way I have been treated would make many men give in. It has been frustrating. I watched Ruiz get a shot, Holyfield get a shot, then Ruiz get another shot. I thank God for the support and belief from my family and also my trainer Mark Jannsen. Endurance is nobler than strength, and patience more so than beauty.

Is there anything you would like to say to Fightnews readers?

To all the boxing fans, I thank you for taking the time to read this interview. I will do my best, to crush this man and to give my family the life they deserve. I will give a performance that boxing fans will enjoy. If you like backing the underdog, as we do here in Australia, then please support me on May 22nd. Thank you and God Bless.




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