THE BIG INTERVIEW – DANIEL DUBOIS
By Richard Hubbard
Listen in to the short term goals set out for Daniel Dubois and it would be easy to get the impression that he is a heavyweight in a hurry.
His promoter Frank Warren last week revealed that the next fight for the 19-year-old would be a ten-rounder and that a generous offer had been rebuffed, for now, by recent British title contender Gary Cornish.
Warren added that he would be contacting the British Boxing Board of Control to contest the age barrier – of 21 – that would prevent Dubois competing for the Lonsdale belt for a couple of years, rightly pointing out there is no such restraint put on challenges for world titles.
The Hall of Fame promoter also stated that the Southern Area title is now firmly in the sights of his teenage charge after just three paid outings.
The young man himself, well he just takes everything in his giant stride, but there is a conviction about him, one which suggests he intends to get the job of winning the world title done and get the job done quickly.
For now though, it is more about learning on the job as Dubois has been kept busy by Warren, featuring on three out of the four shows so far showcased by BT Sport.
“No break from camp, constant training, constant working in the gym and constant improvement,” said Dubois on his daily routine. “I am improving as a fighter, so that is good for me.
“I have definitely been busy, but it is what I anticipated and what I was told. Just moving slowly, improving and progressing and always working on things in the gym – improving as a fighter and building my profile as a fighter.
“I’ve just been slowing down the pace when I have to and going up and down the levels of training. Sometimes after a fight I will drop it down and do a little bit of basic weight training, then when it is fight time I step it up.
“I prepare for each fight at a time and it has been good and I have adapted to it well.”
Dubois has been one of the leading characters in the entry of BT Sport onto the boxing stage in a double-act with BoxNation and it is a starring role that seems to have captured the imagination of the watching public.
For the softly-spoken Dubois, the quiet life is no longer an option.
“People notice me more and, with boxing on BT Sport under my promoter Frank Warren, it has built me a profile as a fighter and more people know of me.
“I get people coming up to me in the street, bus drivers stopping, lots of people coming up saying ‘you are that fighter we saw on TV’. It is really good for me getting noticed.”
Dubois has spent a shade over five minutes in the ring across his three fights so far. All of his opponents were the proud owners of winning records and all three quickly became familiar with the canvas.
The strapping 6ft 4”- and a bit Dubois acknowledges that he has probably faced tougher examinations behind closed doors at the Peacock Gym in Canning Town but, his introduction has been more about making himself at home amongst the heavy mob.
“Yeah, quite possibly, but at this stage I am enjoying it and learning. I am soaking up the atmosphere and energy from the crowds – it is new for me and I like it.”
His first victory – against the slightly portly – Marcus Kelly at the Manchester Arena attracted some unfair ridicule due to the late sub not having the time to tighten his abs, but the Truro man was no respecter of fearsome reputations and came out swinging.
“They can be the most dangerous because they don’t care. They are just coming out to upset the applecart and disrupt whatever plans you may have had before the fight.”
It turned out alright on the night, with Kelly deciding against further punishment after being tagged on 35 seconds, before Dubois ventured to Leicester for his second assignment against the former Olympian Blaise Mendouo, who carried a more potent threat and lasted 3minutes and 48 seconds.
“To be honest, it was good for me because I got past what was supposed to be a test and I passed it well, did my job and took him out of there. I deleted the threat level completely.”
Likewise when the 6ft 8” David Howe accepted his challenge at the Copper Box last month and was making his way back to the dressing room after just 40 seconds.
“It shows you that size doesn’t matter. When they feel the power it is the law that they have to go down!” stated Dubois, who will next be enforcing the law at the Copper Box on July 8.