Preparing for his WBF Masters World heavyweight title encounter Mount Isa boxer Sunny Raitava is saying "the belt is coming home with me"
Sunny Raitava hopes to gain a World Boxing Foundation Masters World heavyweight title in the Sunshine Coast at the end of the month against veteran boxer Justin Clements in the hope it will land him a fight overseas once the pandemic eases.
Raitava previously held the crown in 2000 but lost it in a points decision bout now Kim Gray of Undisputed Promotions said the new fight featured two of the top three in the world.
"Clements is rated No.1 with Sunny rated at No. 3," Gray said.
"It's a fight that has been talked about over the last few years and I am excited".
Raitava is equally excited about his match up.
"Justin is a very good boxer, technically very good too. He has a very good amateur background, and former highly rated professional boxer," Riatava said.
"I'm expecting the best of Justin, every time I face these challengers, they always bring their best game and perform better then they always have done in the past. I'm expecting a good challenge, but I'm putting it out there, the belt is coming home with me".
Raitava has been training out of Derrick's Boxing Gym for the past few years under head trainers Kerry and James Derrick and Derricks trainer Sudhesh Somu.
James Derrick said Raitava loved to be involved in the big shows.
"The chance to headline a big show is very exciting for any boxer, especially for a world strap," Derrick said.
The preparation for Raitava has been difficult with the ability to fight in tournaments in the lead up to this event still impacted by border closures, as well as working a one week on-one week off mining roster.
He gets around this adversity by the support of the younger boxers at the gym who Raitava praises as being more agile than him, and pushes him hard along with the other senior fighters. He also draws on support from around Mount Isa, with various trainers willing to do pad work and help with fight preparation.
Raitava's world title fight is scheduled for September 25 in Caloundra, sanctioned by the World Boxing Foundation.
Read the full article by Derek Barry of The North West Star here.