Peterborough cruiserweight Karl Wheeler reckons if he listens to his coach, his next fight won’t hurt too much.
The 34 year-old faces a knockout specialist in London later this month.
He meets Ossie Jervier in the semi-finals of promoter Steve Goodwin’s Fight Cup over 10 rounds at the York Hall in Bethnal Green on Saturday, October 29.
As an amateur, Jervier powered to Haringey Box Cup gold at Alexandra Palace and his four-fight professional record shows three knock-out wins.
The 35 year-old from North London has knocked out two opponents, Moses Matovu and Jindrich Velecky, who have taken Wheeler the distance.
“People ask me: ‘Aren’t you worried about his power?’” said Wheeler. “But my plan is to avoid his punches, to not take them!
“At that weight, every punch hurts – even the jabs. Being punched in the face by someone who weighs 14 stones plus isn’t nice.
“I’m tall, he’s short and I have to use my range. I’ve beaten short fighters before and if I listen to (coach) Steve (Whitwell), I should be okay.
“The last time I didn’t listen to Steve, I lost (against Yavor Marinchev) and I’ve learned from that.
“That loss really grounded me and made me realise just how much I need Steve. He knows his stuff and he’s got me back on track.”
Wheeler has had back-to-back wins this year since the loss to Marinchev – and another win this month will take him through to the final of the Fight Cup.
The other semi-final is between Biola Kudus and Ryan Crawford – and they also meet on the York Hall show.
Wheeler, who rallied from an early wobble to wallop Kudus inside a couple of rounds in March, said: “With both the semi-finals on the show, it’s a good night for the supporters.
“They will also get to see who I will fight in the final, if I win. But at the moment all I’m thinking about is my semi-final.”
The winner of the Fight Cup will be the number one challenger for the Southern Area title that changed hands last week.
Brixton’s Isaac Chamberlain took the belt from Wadi Camacho with a 10-round points win – and Wheeler was at the York Hall to see the fight.
He said: “Chamberlain’s shoulder popped out in about the fourth round and the referee and doctors wanted to stop the fight. But he just said: ‘It’s okay’ and carried on fighting.
“You have to give him so much credit for that and I thought the decision was fair.
“I have to win my next two fights and then see if we can sort out a fight with Isaac if he’s still got the belt.
“Isaac is promoted by Eddie Hearn, so if I fight him for the title it could be on a big Sky Sports show.”
Tickets for the show at the York Hall are available from 07398-750739.