Unified super-middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez is widely expected to brush aside mandatory challenger and former sparring partner Avni Yildirim when they meet at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami on February 27, but the Mexican maestro insists he isn’t overlooking the 12-1 underdog from Turkey.
WBA ‘Super’ and WBC king Canelo (54-1-2, 36 KOs) is mindful that Yildirim (21-2, 12 KOs) enters the bout with no pressure or expectation, with one punch capable of turning any fight on its head, but still believes he is superior in every department (with good reason).
“I do feel superior and I am superior to Yildirim,” Canelo told Jorge Ebro of El Nuevo Herald. “But I’m training like it’s my biggest fight and I’m not underestimating him at all. I know this is boxing and one punch can change everything. It’s not in me to underestimate anyone.’
“I do think Yildirim will be a good opponent, He’s a good boxer and I think we’re going to make an exciting fight for the audience who are going to attend the event that night and for those who will follow the fight on television.”
A Canelo victory will see the Mexican rubber-stamp a planned unification clash with rival WBO champion Billy Joe Saunders on May 8.