Paul Kean: Dundee boxer says postponement of bout with Hamzah Sheeraz could work to his advantage

By Tyrone SmithBBC Scotland Sport
'I'm going to peak at the right time now' - Kean

Dundee boxer Paul Kean says the rescheduling of his WBO European super-welterweight title fight with Hamzah Sheeraz could work to his advantage.

Kean, 27, was due to face the unbeaten Englishman at London's O2 Arena on 11 April, on the undercard of Daniel Dubois and Joe Joyce's British heavyweight showdown.

However, the bill has been rescheduled for 11 July due to coronavirus.

"To be honest, it has probably worked in my favour," he told BBC Scotland.

"It will give us a full camp - when you get these fights, you usually get them at short notice. This will give us 12 weeks to bring sparring partners up, I will go down south sparring, my strength and conditioning coach will put different phases in my training, so I will peak at the right time and I will be more than ready for July.

"I was training as hard as I could but with the situation at the moment, it was always going to be called off so I was ready for the let down. I am obviously gutted, three weeks out. I have put in a lot of training but it is what it is, you have just got to refocus and go again."

Showdown could be "life-changing"

Kean, who is a former three-time world kickboxing champion, turned to boxing three-and-a-half years ago and boasts a 12-1 professional record.

20-year-old opponent Sheeraz meanwhile has won all 10 of his fights, and while the Dundonian will start as the underdog, he is confident he can upset the odds when the pair eventually take to the ring.

"Hamzah is a really good fighter - he's 10 and 0, got five knockouts, and he is young, but I don't think he has been tested yet," he said.

"I am 27 - I have only had three more professional fights than him but I have been in the fight game since I was three or four years old, so I know what I am doing. I think this is a great opportunity for me and I am going to take it with both hands.

'It is life-changing for me, if I win this fight, it pushes me on to bigger and better things."

While Kean has dreams of getting to the top, he also has a burning desire to bring big-time boxing to his home city.

"If I do well down there, maybe we can get a big show in Dundee," he said.

"That is the only thing I have not done, I would love to fight in Dundee. My manager, Sam Kynoch, is working behind the scenes at the moment to get a venue, and it is looking good, so hopefully off the back of this fight we can push on."