x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Calzaghe on mission to make Jones suffer

Joe Calzaghe is on a mission to punish Roy Jones Jr in their much anticipated "Battle of the Superpowers" at Madison Square Garden.

NEW YORK // Joe Calzaghe is on a mission to punish Roy Jones Jr in their much anticipated "Battle of the Superpowers" at Madison Square Garden on Saturday. The Welsh fighter will retire after this fight but it has not stopped him preparing it like no other and the fire and pride is evident as ever as Calzaghe tries to end his career in style. "Super" Joe Calzaghe, the undefeated longtime super middleweight champion, and "Superman" Jones, a world champion in four weight classes from middleweight to heavyweight, will meet in the 12-round bout. The Briton Calzaghe, 36, and the American Jones, 39, are both in the twilight of their careers, but appear to be in top shape for a clash that could have been a candidate for fight of the decade had both fighters been younger.

"He's a great fighter, probably pound for pound the best fighter in the world. He's 45-0. Who else is 45-0?" said Jones, who owns a record of 52-4 with 38 knockouts. "I'm getting to fight one of the greatest fighters there's ever been and getting to fight in Madison Square Garden," Calzaghe said. "What more motivation can I need?" Despite their advanced ages, the prospects of an explosive encounter were increased by last month's stunning showing by the 43-year-old Bernard Hopkins, who upset 26-year-old world middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik at 170 pounds.

Calzaghe won a split decision against Hopkins in Las Vegas in his first US fight and maiden bout as a light heavyweight. The high-energy southpaw said he felt better about that performance after seeing what Hopkins did to Pavlik. "It just showed how good my win was," Calzaghe said. "I respect the guy (Jones) but now he's in my way," said Calzaghe. "Now I'm going in the ring and do my best to knock him out."

Jones, who set up the fight personally with Calzaghe, clinching the deal in a text-message exchange, praised his opponent as a man of pride and dignity. In the ring, Jones said he was confident and questioned the impact of the steady barrage of punches thrown by Calzaghe. "One power shot and 10 pitty-pats are about the same," said the former heavyweight champion who also hinted at a possible rematch in Wales. "I'm going to go to Cardiff and fight him again if I beat him," Jones said.

*Reuters