Footy Show Fight Night Debacle

Image: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Liam_Messam_at_fundraiser_dinner.jpeg

Regardless of the outrageous mismatch All Blacks superstar Liam Messam says he is ‘shaking’ ahead of tomorrow his boxing debut tomorrow night.

For his first professional fight the New Zealand giant is facing Rhys Sullivan, a man who has been knocked out in all three of his previous fights.

To say the fight card is mismatched in tomorrow night’s inaugural Footy Show Fight Night is an understatement. There would be more competition in just shooting the non-footballers on the card.

But Messam went through the usual media hype to spruik the match and I suppose I’m duty bound to report it: “When we (he and Sonny Bill Williams) were driving here I saw ANZ stadium across the road and I thought, ‘I could easily go out there and play in front of a full stadium in a Bledisloe Cup game’.  I walk in here, I’m shaking, the nerves are going.”

Messam says he has watched boxing all his life. He has trained since he was a teenager, but only started boxing as an amateur after becoming friends with Sonny Bill Williams at the Chiefs Super.

“It (boxing) has helped me all my career. When I moved up to the Chiefs I was doing a lot of boxing in the off-season. I just never had the gonads to jump in the ring and turn it into a fight,” said Messam.

“I’m lucky enough to have had three fights now (Fight for Life charity events). It definitely helps the fitness side of things and the mental side of things – You’ve got to be pretty mentally tough to be boxing.

“You’ve also got to keep your cool in the ring, and that helps in footy. When you get into pressure situations in a big game, you know you can really dig deep and just do your job when it matters most.”

He’ll have no trouble doing his job tomorrow.

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