Published: July 14, 2004
Danny Williams hopes to avoid the fate which befell one of his chief sparring partners when he steps into the ring against Mike Tyson at the end of the month.
The Brixton heavyweight has enlisted the help of Clifford Etienne to put the finishing touches to preparations for his big night in Louisville on July 30.
The choice of Etienne will have raised some eyebrows. The self-styled ‘Black Rhino’ charged for precisely 49 seconds towards Tyson in their bout in February last year before ending up flat out on the canvas.
Nevertheless there is obvious merit in working with a come-forward brawler such as Etienne as Williams attempts somehow to figure out a game-plan to combat Iron Mike’s own relentless advances.
Williams said: “I’ll be having some really good sparring this week and I’m feeling really sharp.
“The gym I’m training in is really hot so I will be ready for the heat of Kentucky.”
Oleg Maskaev and Sherman Williams have also been employed by Williams as he aims to seize his chance and catapult himself high amongst the world heavyweight elite.
New York-based Maskaev has been in with big names like Hasim Rahman and Oliver McCall and had been slated as Tyson’s comeback opponent earlier this year.
Meanwhile Tyson has not been given an exclusively warm welcome as he prepares for his Louisville debut.
The city’s mayor Jerry Abramson has hit out at the former world champion’s visit and vowed he will not attend the fight.
Abramson’s spokesman Jay Blanton said: “He does not approve of Mike Tyson, doesn’t approve of what he stands for and has no interest in attending the fight.”