Kongo warning for Clay

Chris Kongo says he has ‘fire in his belly’ and is planning to gatecrash the welterweight title picture with an eye-catching stoppage victory over Bracknell’s Luther Clay at Matchroom’s Fight Camp on Saturday (August 22).

A former member of Team GB, Kongo (11-0, 6 KOs) has watched on the sidelines as 147lbs rivals Josh Kelly and Conor Benn have received star treatment on the Sky Sports platform, but now the South Londoner is ready to seize his opportunity on the Dillian Whyte-Alexander Povetkin undercard.

In the other corner stands the dangerous Clay (13-1, 5 KOs) who is on the fringes of world title contention and ranked No.11 by the WBO, defending the organisation’s ‘Global’ title on Saturday. Now managed by heavyweight contender Whyte, Kongo can’t wait to prove his worth under the big fight spotlight.

“I took the fight straight away,” said Kongo. “I didn’t even have to think about it. I’ve been waiting for the opportunity and it’s here now, so I’m going to take it with both hands. It has been a long time coming. I’ve come up the hard way in the sport of boxing and there’s fire in my belly. I’m going to rip the belt from him. I’m not taking any chances. I’m not leaving it to the judges. We’re going to rip the belt off the champion. Guaranteed. 

“I believe I’m coming to take the title regardless of what Luther does. I believe this is my time. When it is someone’s time, it doesn’t matter what happens, you can’t stop it. I believe this is the moment Chris Kongo is going to be announced as one of the top welterweights in the division. I need to prove that I am the number one welterweight in the country. I know my level. That’s why I believe I can be at the top table.

“He’s going to try and bring the pressure because he thinks I’ll be rusty due to my time out of the ring [Kongo hasn’t boxed since April 2019]. They’re going to be in for a big shock. They will try to put pressure on me and wait until the later rounds. It’s probably the worst thing they can do. We all know what kind of shape Jim McDonnell is going to have me in. 

“We know he’s not going to try and out skill me or outbox me because he can’t do that. His greatest attributes are always coming from the front foot. If he wants to bring the pressure, trust me, we’re going to meet head on. I’m a big welterweight. I’ll be ready for that.”

The 6ft Kongo is currently the 4/6 favourite on Betfred with champion Clay available at 5/4. The draw is 20-1.

Clay-Kongo will be broadcast live on Sky Sports Box Office on Saturday in the UK. The show is headlined by the WBC Diamond heavyweight title fight between Dillian Whyte and Alexander Povetkin.

Main image: Clay and Kongo go head-to-head. Photo: Mark Robinson/Matchroom.