Jamie McDonnell is not only one of the best boxers in the world - he’s probably the most honest.
With refreshing candour, the Hatfield, Doncaster bantam, who has just made his third successful defence of his WBA title, admits he is not all that interested in boxing - only the money that goes with it.
While he is “chuffed to bits” to have beaten challenger Tomoki Kamedi in Texas, for the second time in four months, he is even more delighted to have fattened his bank account.
“That was a good pay day, but hopefully the next one is even bigger. That’s what it is all about” he said.
“That is what motivates me. I am not going to lie, I am not a boxing man.
“It’s whoever pays me the most money. I believe at bantamweight I beat anybody, as long as I have got enough preparation. Line the biggest money fights up and I’ll just go and take it and move on.”
Asked if he was now a wealthy man, he replied: “It is getting there now.
“Barry Hearn (promoter) said to me I was in the top five or six best paid, now, in Britain. As long as I keep winning the money is going to come.
“I beat (US boxing powerbroker) Al Haymon’s number one bantamweight, they were hoping for big things for him and I smashed him out of the water and have kind of taken his place.
“Al Haymon is paying big money at the minute. The last fight cleared my mortgage - mortgage free at 29 , sponsors are all on board. Things are looking good.”
McDonnell has won every fight since 2008 and says: “I dont want to get beat (now) because it might be the end of the road. The money drops down so much. I couldn’t get motivated. Like I say, money is everything to me. I’ll not get beat because I know them pay days are going.”
The champion oaid tribute to his Rotherham trainer Dave Coldwell.
“He has done a fantastic job. We have been working on loads of stuff in the gym, mainly using that jab and movements, stepping to the side.
“I didn’t throw all the shots that we have been working on but the jab the straight shots were working. Whatever he told me to do I did, we smashed the diet we had a nutritionist on board.
I rested up when I was told to and it paid off. Whatever he says I do, hopefully we are a good partnership now, things are looking good and hopefully we will have some massive fights in the States.”
McDonnell, who has his eyes on a fight with Juan Carlos Payano, the WBA super champion, had words of comfort for Sheffield amateur Dalton Smith, who lost in the semi finals of the Commonwealth Youth Games in Samoa. “As long as you learn form the losses, it doesn’t mean anything. It shows the character of a good champion, how they come back. Don’t dwell on it, just learn from it.”
n Sheffield’s Adam Etches will fight in Monte Carlo, against Yosuke Kirima, from Japan, in November. Manager Richard Poxon said: “It’s a 10 round fight on a bill with two world titles.”