IBF world super-middleweight champion James DeGale does not feel he gets enough respect – though intends to change that once he fights WBC champion Badou Jack on January 14.
The 30-year-old became the first British fighter to have won an Olympic gold medal and professional world title last year when he dropped and outpointed Andre Dirrell for the vacant belt.
He’s defended it twice since then – against Lucien Bute and Rogelio Medina – though is yet to box in his home country as world champion, and will meet Jack at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
“I think in the last three fights I’ve shown everything. I haven’t been getting the respect that I deserve. I’ve beaten everyone put in front of me. This is what I love to do,” the Londoner said.
“My people in London can’t wait for me to fight at home. It’s coming. But first I want to take over in America.
“New York is one of my favorite cities. It’s a boxing city. I watched [Leo] Santa Cruz vs. [Carl] Frampton and it was a wicked atmosphere. I can’t wait to be in there.”
Despite a loss to bitter rival George Groves earlier in his career, ‘Chunky’ is widely considered as the best super-middleweight in the world, with Jack not too far behind.
This fight has been planned for a while, with both men retaining their titles on the same bill in Washington earlier in the year.
“It’s here. The big one. The best fighting the best. Number one against number two. Badou Jack is a very good fighter. He doesn’t do anything spectacular, but he’s a compete fighter,” DeGale continued.
“I have that X-factor. I’ve lost before and I’m not going to lose again. I’ve come too far in my life to lose this opportunity.
“I’m very confident in my abilities. I believe I’m the best in the division and one of the best in the world. I’ve been waiting for this fight for a long time and I’m ready to get in there.
“I’m a natural super middleweight. I want to be in fights where people think I’m going to lose. I’ll challenge anybody.
“Me and Badou Jack are two different fighters. I think I’m going to beat him wide on the scorecards or stop him.”