In an exclusive interview with Mark Franklin of Australian Boxing Central, Jackson spoke on his upcoming opponent, and what he expects stylistically from Lopez on fight night.
Jackson: “I haven’t seen much footage, because I don’t watch much of it. I like to adjust on the night. My amateur experience tells me that works best for me. He (Lopez) does bring pro experience, but I had 113 amateur fights, including 85 international fights. In that time, I beat Nicholas Walters (now fighting Vasyl Lomachenko for the WBO World Super Featherweight Title), plus Australia’s best boxers around my weight. I’m looking forward to the test, in a great step up for me as a professional.”
Luke, you regularly head up to Sydney to train under the highly respected Billy Hussein, in his BodyPunch gym- a stable which boasts fighters such as Paul “Showtime” Fleming, Billy “The Kid” Dib, and Billel “Babyface” Dib, among others.
How invaluable has that regimen been for you, with those types of sparring partners?
Jackson: “You can’t beat it, that’s why I do it. I leave everything at home for five weeks. I take this sport very seriously. It’s not a game to me. I do this so that I can perform under lights and beat guys like Lopez.”
A win here would place you inside the WBO’s top 15 in the world at featherweight. What would a win and a top 15 world ranking do in terms of shaping your 2017 campaign?
Jackson: “I’m ranked 12th in the WBA, so it’ll hold me in good stead. I’m not ready for a world title fight, but to even get there you’ve got to beat guys like Lopez. I put a lot of pressure on myself as an amateur, and sometimes I didn’t enjoy my career because of the pressure. So now I think whatever will be will be, and make sure that I enjoy it. There’s no pressure. Growing up I had it tough, I wasn’t even supposed to be here. I’m just happy to be here today, and I don’t take that for granted. My attitude is to take each day as it comes.”
Jackson fights at Princes Wharf No. 1, Hobart, Tasmania, this Saturday night
You can purchase your tickets from www.fightcardpromotions.com.au, or if you can’t get there, you can tune in to the live stream at www.liveboxing.com.au
Luke Jackson, the former Olympian and former Australian Featherweight champion, owns a gym in Hobart, and you can find out all you need to know about it, by heading to www.actionfitnesscentre.com.au
All articles featured on the Australian Boxing Central website are written by Tai Tuiniua, and all interviews are conducted by Mark Franklin, unless stated otherwise.