Double Olympic champion Nicola Adams is out to emulate her hero Muhammad Ali when she makes her debut this Saturday night.
The British star enters the professional ranks as part of a stacked card live on BoxNation headlined by world champion Terry Flanagan defending his lightweight world title against Petr Petrov, plus a thrilling clash between Liam Smith and the undefeated Liam Williams.
34-year-old Adams has already taken a leaf out of Ali’s book by breaking down barriers, in her case around women’s boxing, and she is keen to follow the cultural icon by going from an Olympic champion to a world champion.
“To become a world champion would mean everything to me. My hero is Muhammad Ali and he went from being an Olympic champion to a world champion as a professional and that’s exactly what I want to do as well,” said Adams.
“I’m hoping to become a world champion next year. I’m coming for every title. If I stay in the flyweight division I’ll be going for Ava Knight, she’s got all the titles at the moment, so she’s the one I’m aiming for,” she said.
Adams has always been very driven and clear in her ambitions.
As an amateur she won countless accolades and in 2012 became the first ever women’s Olympic champion when she won flyweight gold.
There were calls for her to turn professional right after London 2012 but she was determined to win even more and set new records that had never been achieved before.
“After 2012 I said I wanted to become a Commonwealth Games champion and then win a World Championship and complete the full set of titles,” Adams said.
“We’ve never had anyone do that in amateur boxing – male or female – and I wanted to be able to achieve that, as well as becoming a double Olympic champion by winning again in 2016.
“After achieving my goals in amateur boxing I want to make some new ones and become a world champion as a professional,” she said.
An impressive win this weekend against Argentina’s Virginia Noemi Carcamo will set her well on the way to attaining that goal as she looks to steal the show on a fantastic night of boxing.
BoxNation will broadcast the brilliant bill from the Manchester Arena from 5.30pm, with the full undercard action exclusively live as part of the brand new ‘Premium Pass’.
Attention will then switch to the main events at 8.30pm which will be topped by Flanagan’s defence of his WBO crown against the rugged Russian Petrov.
He hopes to look good in his outing before trying to unify the 135-pound division later this year.
The standout fight on the card, however, which is set to produce fireworks, is the impending battle between former super-welterweight world champion Smith and Welshman Williams.
The clash is for the interim WBO World super-welterweight title, with the winner eyeing the chance of world title glory.
28-year-old Smith carries the experience and has fought some leading names including Canelo Alvarez but Williams is forming a reputation as a big puncher having stopped 11 of his opponents in his 16 wins.
As the younger man at 24-years-old Williams will be looking to grab his opportunity against Smith and emerge as one of Britain’s finest talents.
Also set to feature on the card is another debutant in 19-year-old heavyweight sensation ‘Dangerous’ Daniel Dubois who will be aiming to devastate his opponent Marcus Kelly.
From Manchester, BoxNation will then move Stateside when one of the world’s elite fighters Vasyl Lomachenko defends his WBO super-featherweight world title against the tough 29-year-old Jason Sosa.
Pound-for-pound star Lomachenko knows Sosa will be looking to cause the upset and has also humbly dismissed claims made by many that he is the best fighter on the planet.
“Jason Sosa is very strong, is motivated, wants to win and he can fight all of the twelve rounds. It will be a hard fight. That I know,” said Lomachenko.
“My top three pound for pound list is; GGG, Sergey Kovalev and Terence Crawford. I don’t want to be number one until I deserve it. That means fighting and winning against two or three world champions. After that I may be number one but for sure not now,” he said.
Top unbeaten cruiserweight Oleksandr Usyk is also on the card and faces a tough test against the undefeated American Michael Hunter.
New BoxNation subscribers on the Sky platform will also be able to join the channel without a registration fee (normally £8) until Saturday midnight by entering promo code FREEBOXING.
Not only will subscribers be able to enjoy this weekend’s marathon night of live boxing but the first month will also include the scintillating showdown between Mexican rivals Canelo and Julio Cesar Chavez on May 6th from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
BoxNation is available on Sky/Freeview/Virgin/TalkTalk/EE/Apple TV/ online at watch.boxnation.com and via apps (iOS, Android, Amazon) for just £12 a month. Buy now at boxnation.com.