On a relatively quiet weekend of boxing, the flamboyant Chris Colbert will take centre stage when he collides with Mongolian contender Tugstsogt ‘King Tug’ Nyambayar at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California, on Saturday. The gifted New Yorker certainly does not lack confidence and believes he has the credentials to be the “face of boxing” in the years to come.
The WBA Interim 130lbs champion was originally scheduled to face Yuriorkis Gamboa before the Cuban veteran withdrew at late notice through injury. But former WBC featherweight title challenger Nyambayar (12-1, 9 KOs) stepped in as a last-ditch replacement to make a far more compelling fight.
The vibrant Colbert, who dyes his hair different colours before his fights, believes the outcome will still remain the same – a knockout victory in his favour.
“I was going to knock Gamboa out cold and now ‘King Tug’ has to take the knockout,” said Brooklyn’s charismatic Colbert (15-0, 6 KOs).
“My hard work is finally paying off. All I have to do is stay focused, dedicated, and disciplined, and then I’ll be the face of boxing in a couple of years. This venue is really known for wars. Come Saturday night I’m definitely going to bring the heat.
“I’m ready for this fight. Nyambayar knows he’s in for trouble on Saturday. Nobody out there can take a fight with me on a week-and-a-half notice and not be in for trouble. I’ve been knocking out everyone they put in front me [in sparring]. They still don’t give me the respect I deserve yet. I just have to keep doing my thing on Saturday night and embarrass him.
“I appreciate ‘Tug’ for taking the fight, but Saturday night I’m going to get in there, dominate and beat him up. This is a Nissan vs. a Lamborghini, and I’m the Lambo. I agree that ‘King Tug’ might be better opposition than Yuriorkis Gamboa would have been. But it doesn’t matter if it was Gamboa, ‘King Tug’, or Arnold Schwarzenegger in there with me, it was always going to be the same outcome on Saturday night.”
Behind the pre-fight hype and braggadocio, Colbert’s hair colour of choice on fight night will carry a special meaning.
“My hair is orange this week as a dedication to the cause of fighting Multiple Sclerosis,” revealed Colbert. “One of my friends, Dave, back in New Jersey has it and he told me his story of how he was paralysed as a kid and also had MS. Then I saw him on the Stairmaster in the gym the next day for like an hour. I saw that and realised there’s no excuses I can make for not being in the gym. I do the different hair colours to make people feel special. I want them to know that I’m fighting for them.
“Nobody in the 130-pound division can beat me. I’m going to continue to prove that every time I step into the ring. I’m going to deliver a dominating performance. Don’t be surprised when I stop him. I don’t think this is going past 10 rounds. I’m going to keep proving that I have power on Saturday night. I’m not discrediting his skills, but I’m just different.”
Main image: Sean Michael Ham/Premier Boxing Champions.