NEIL Dawson needs a repeat southern raid this weekend in a fight that will make or break his career.
The cruiserweight from Thorpe Hesley, aged 32, heads to London to face unbeaten Tony Conquest. A win thrusts the victorious into British title contention and also hands them the WBO International title.
Dawson last took a fight away in September and floored Menay Edwards on the way to a points win at the York Hall. Joiner Dawson showed character to get up off the canvas himself in that fight and knows what will be required of him against Southern Area champion Conquest (10-0 4kos).
“It’s all up against me again going down there and it won’t be going to the scorecards, put it that way. I’m not going to win or lose on points. I’m going to knock him out. From what I’ve seen of him he’s nothing that special and I’m not afraid. It’s not as if I’m facing Mike Tyson. What’s given me the most confidence is that I’m taller than him and that will mean he’ll be walking onto my shots, not the other way around.”
The showdown will make up part of Ricky Burns’ world title defence undercard at the ExCel Arena but Dawson won’t be revelling in the occasion or the glorious surroundings of the Olympic boxing successes. “I’ve been at it too long for any of that to have any effect on me,” he declared. “Maybe it would be different if I was younger but I want to fight for a British title and to do that I have to win on the night. All the other things going off won’t matter.
“It’s great to box on one of Ricky’s shows because he is a star but I’m focusing on my fight because it’s going to be a real battle.”
Scotsman Burns has sparred with unbeaten Sheffield super-bantamweight Kid Galahad.