Tony Yoka spoke on Monday ahead of his fight against Carlos Takam next Saturday. Almost ten months after his first defeat against Martin Bacol, Yuka is back and says he no longer has the right to make mistakes. After four months of training in the United States, the French boxer is focused and eagerly awaiting the fight to rediscover the taste of victory.
Tony, how are you feeling after days of fighting?
I’ve been waiting for this fight for a while. At first I was told January, February, and then March. So I stayed in the States but was in a hurry to get back in the ring.
What were you missing four months ago?
My family, my friends, all my habits. But I know why I am leaving, and why I am making these sacrifices. I was always aware of all this, I just treated it differently. Whatever the cost, I do it.
Why the United States?
The instructors are better, the preparation is better, and the fact that you are away from it all means you are more focused on your work. I have my family and friends here and get you out of boot camp, fight.
“It’s good to have a French-French battle”
Is defeat last year digested?
Yes, but I want to slip away with victory. We will say that the last stage of this mourning is on the Sabbath.
Is it a way to revive you?
Of course I want to come back with a good victory.
My opponent is known. It’s good to have a Franco-French battle. French boxers often avoid each other, I don’t understand why. He played the game, which is very good.
Is it a private battle between the French?
Yes, because there will be supporters for me, and the public will be divided, and not only for me. That’s interesting.
Does boxing have the status it deserves?
It depends on the boxers, the French need boxers to match them. In games it worked. We have to repeat the great battles and the great victories…
“I’m back to jump better.”
Yes, as in all battles, but no more.
Are you very serious? Is it focus?
Yes, it’s the fact that I’m focused, I’m 1000% focused. I said it a few days ago, I have no room for error. I’m not even thinking of losing this fight. With the preparation you have done. I’ve backed up to jump better.
Was the US commando training?
About four months in the US is not fun, and boxing all the time is hard, for the mind too, but you have to go through it. We draw motivation during these moments.
What do you want to show?
I have worked. I lost but I can get back. In boxing it’s complicated when you come out of a beat like last year. But I had time to cut in and make great preparations. I didn’t want to come back with a fight, I wanted to come back with a hard fight.
Do you know Charles…
We’ve known each other for a very long time, and we trained in the same room with the same coach for a few years. I’ve been arguing with Carlos for a long time. Since the Olympics, in which I made my career, I have also been to the United States. The height is that he trains in Las Vegas, it’s private training.
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