AUSTRALIAN super-welterweight champion Sam Ah-See has one message for opponent Mike Esgandari in the lead up to their bout on June 25 - watch out.
Ah-See jetted back into the country three weeks ago after spending 17 days in camp with former Australian heavyweight contender Justin Fortune in Hollywood and said he is in the best shape of his career.
Fortune has over 20 years’ experience in the industry, and has trained some of the world’s best former and current boxers including Jeff Fenech, Jeff Harding, Kostya Tszyu and Manny Pacquiao. He also has 29 professional fights under his belt, including a world championship bout against legend Lennox Lewis.
Fortune put Ah-See through 14 days of intensive training, and the former Mobsport boxer said the experience opened his eyes to an entirely new way to train, and box.
“It was easily the best thing I’ve ever done as a boxer,” he said.
“I got stuck in a bit of a routine here, sparring the same old guys. Over there I’ve sparred a completely different style of fighter.
“They were so anal about technique over there. It was so different, for example the pad work wasn’t just a three-minute straight up workout. If I did something wrong he’d stop me and change my form and technique until I got it right. There was plenty of talking, then it all become about repetition.
“He changed the way I looked at strength training as well, and I’ve come back a better fighter.
“It was a real eye opener.”
Ah-See said the experience, combined with his Australian super-welterweight title win over Shannon ‘Shaggy’ King in February, puts him in good stead for his fight with Esgandari in a fortnight.
“I’m confident after the Shaggy fight,” Ah-See said.
“I know how far I can push my body now. This is only a six rounder too. I’m fitter and I’ve gone up a couple of levels in America. But I’ve heard Esgandari is a tough fighter, just a hard guy.
“He is similar to Shaggy. He’s all power, and has a muay thai background. He’s undefeated through three fights, all knockout wins, and I’ve heard he is even more aggressive than Shaggy.
“I’m expecting a very tough fight.”
Ah-See said following the fight he will continue training with one eye on returning to America in an attempt to reach his ultimate dream - “fighting over there for a world championship.”
Ah-See and Esgandari will fight at a catch weight of 68.5kg, a negotiated weight often between two divisions, in preparation for his planned drop to welterweight and the bout is set to broadcast live on Fox Sports Big Time Boxing.
The fight is scheduled for Wednesday, June 25 at the Melbourne Pavilion in Flemington.
Ah-See’s his super-welterweight title is not on the line.