Ahead of his world title fight in New York this Saturday, IBF World super middleweight champion James DeGale has been reflecting on his journey to this unification showdown with Badou Jack.
Speaking in a video for wearable training gear SIXPAD, the 30-year-old native Londoner describes his introduction to boxing.
DeGale said: “I started boxing at the age of 10. I remember it like it was yesterday, from the smell of the sweaty gloves. I used to like the sparring, I used to like the pad work, I used to like getting in [the ring] and punching someone or even getting hit.”
DeGale, who has been wearing SIXPAD as part of his training program in the build-up to this fight, talks about his toughest fights and the occasions he’s had dig deep to overcome the odds. He said: “The hardest fight I had was when I boxed for my European title. I showed what I about. I showed heart, determination. I bit down on my gum shield and dug in.”
With the unification bout against WBC World super middleweight champion Badou Jack just days away, the southpaw has been talking about what it means to fight in New York. He said: “New York is a boxing city; some great fights have been held there. I’m thinking Prince Naseem Hamed versus Kevin Kelley at Madison Square Garden. I remember watching that as a young boy and thinking ‘I want to do that’.”
Looking ahead to the fight, DeGale said: “This is the two best in the division, fighting each other. The champ versus the champ. This determines who is the best in the division.
“Badou Jack is a very, very good fighter. He’s underrated. He’s proven in the last few fights that he’s a world class operator, so I’ve got to be extremely switched on, be focused and super fit and be sure I come with a win and become number one in the division.”