Queensland underdog Alex Leapai has likened himself to Mike Tyson and boldly declared Wladimir Klitschko's long reign at the top of world heavyweight boxing is about to end.
Leapai, the Samoan-born delivery truck driver and ex-con, is preparing for the biggest pay day of his largely-unheralded career after securing a unified world title bout on April 27 in Germany. The 34-year-old signed the contract in Brisbane yesterday after two months of negotiations were finalised overnight.
Leapai set up the showdown with Klitschko when he stunned the boxing world by defeating Russian Denis Boystov in November to become the top WBO contender.
He has been written off in Europe and by bookmakers around the globe but Leapai said the Ukrainian's 61-3 (51 KO) record counted for naught.
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"I don't believe this guy has faced anybody with the power that I've got," Leapai, who has a 30-4-3 (24 KO) record, said. "Tyson was only a short fighter and he dominated for so many years. He had the power and I've got the power too."
Meanwhile, the Ukrainian says he wants to increase his profile in America after the expected win.
"I'm missing the fans in the US," Klitschko said. "The fan base is huge here and I would love to fight back in the States ... but I need a broadcaster and I need an arena."
- AAP, AP