Lerena positive of winning WBC title against Gashi
Duo face-off for WBC Interim bridgerweight title
Senad Gashi has a scary knockout of 26 from 27 wins, but Kevin "Two Guns" Lerena is certainly not scared of the German-based Yugoslavian he will face for the WBC Interim bridgerweight title at Emperors Palace on November 25.
Their fight will headline Golden Gloves "Double Down @ The Palace" five-bout card which features reigning SA and IBF Africa junior-middleweight champion Shervontaigh Koopman in an eight-rounder with Angolan Cristiano Ndombassy.
"Respect is the key word but when the bell goes, it's business and respect is thrown out of the window," said the fearless warrior – Lerena – who showed no fear for the big man, Daniel Dubois, when they met in front of 90,000 English fans at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in England on December 3 last year.
Lerena dropped the Englishman three times in round one but lost the fight for the WBA regular heavyweight title by a stoppage in the third round. It was only his third fight in that heavyweight division where he had already made an impression by winning the WBA Inter-Continental title in his second fight.
Lerena had previously dominated the cruiserweight as the IBO champion until he moved up to heavyweight class.
After his loss to Dubois, Lerena dropped a weight down to the new division, which sits between the WBC's cruiserweight and heavyweight divisions. Lukasz Rozanski from Poland is the champion.
"I've about 17 days to go; it's going be a tough fight but I believe I have a better pedigree; I've prepared better and I've got the world to win," said Lerena, who is rated No 1 in that weight division where Gashi occupies the No 7 spot.
Lerena, who is trained by retired heavyweight fighter Peter Smith, added: "I need to win the interim belt in order to get a shot at Badou Jack or Rozanski. In the event they don't fight, I will be elevated to world super champion [depending on the outcome of November 25 fight]."
He said he was excited. "Honestly, I think I'm in the best shape; best that I have sparred and you will see an explosive Kevin, fast Kevin, a mover, the guy I was a couple of fights ago," he said.
"I am not as big as I was maybe two fights ago, but I'm definitely planning to be explosive and elusive."
The left-handed Lerena has flatted 14 of his 29 victims with two losses.
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