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Josh Taylor on his search for a new trainer

Josh Taylor
Action Images/Reuters/Andrew Couldridge
Unified IBF and WBA super-lightweight champion Josh Taylor tells John Dennen that he is doing trials with potential new coaches

Do you have a shortlist for a new coach or any names that you’re thinking about?

Not really at the minute, I can’t really say anything too much. I’m going around doing trials with a few coaches. It’s been good. I’m getting a little bit closer to finding a new coach. It’s good. It’s going well.

We’re still looking around and it’s still going well. I’ve had a couple of good weeks with a couple of good coaches so it’s gone well. Just need to get close to make a decision pretty soon.

Do you have an idea of when you’ll need to make the decision?

I’ll probably be making a decision in a couple of weeks. I might be boxing late April so I’ll probably need to make a decision in a couple of weeks. You’ll no doubt hear about it in a couple of weeks.

Would you like train out in America, or slightly closer to home than in London?

If it comes to it I’m very open to going anywhere. I’m used to being away from home.

Even in my amateur days I was always away from home, I was always in Sheffield or away with the Scotland team for tournaments. If it comes to it and I have to go to America, I’m more than open to it. I’ve not looked at America yet, looked at sort of home grown coaches at the minute in the UK. But if I can’t come to an agreement with any of these coaches we might have to go to America. So that would be exciting.

Does being away suit you?

I’m used to being away from my home comforts. I feel like when I go home I’m kind of on holiday because it’s a luxury for me to be home. So I kind of take my foot off the gas in terms of training hard. Because I’ve got all my home comforts and everything there. So I prefer being away and I can just use that as motivation going into the ring.

Josh Taylor
Josh Taylor has unified two world titles at 140lbs Action Images/Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Why did you choose Top Rank as a promoter and what are they going to be able to do for you?

I just think they’ve got the biggest platform; ESPN. When you go to America ESPN’s the biggest channel. It’s got the biggest platform, the biggest audience. I just thought it was a no brainer. I can still fight in the UK, I’m not tied down to just fighting in America. I can still fight in the UK and also I’ve got the backing of Top Rank to get the big fights made in America as well. I think I’ve got the best of both worlds. I think I’ve done the best deal for myself as possible.

They’ve got all the big names and the big draws. So I just feel it was best move for me at this time in my career. I’m happy with the decision that I made and looking forward to seeing what the future holds.

Have Top Rank given you any indication that they’d like to come over here and promote a show in the UK?

They’ve said they want to get a couple of fights over here. They’ve done it with Mick Conlan in Belfast. So there’s no reason why they can’t do it in Scotland so it’s definitely an option and it’s one I hope that can happen as well.

It’s going to be on a big platform no matter what. So it’s definitely going to be exciting times ahead. I’m just looking forward to getting stuck into camp now and getting stuck into training, choosing a coach and a fresh start.

Do you think there comes a time in a career when it’s good to freshen things up?

I think so. Don’t get me wrong, working with Shane and Barry [McGuigan] was brilliant. I felt I was improving with every fight and I was clicking really well in terms of the boxing side of things. But I felt that the time was right to move on to something else and try something new and change up, and add to what I’ve got now as a fighter. Add to what I’ve already got. It’ll be an amazing addition to what I’ve already got and built up. So I feel really excited for the future.

Jose Ramirez’s fight with Viktor Postol in China has been cancelled [due to the coronavirus outbreak], what would you think if the undisputed fight was put on the table?

I would love to. But I think I got to do this mandatory [defence against Apinun Khongsong] before anything else. I think I’ve got to do that first and then go for the Ramirez fight. I think it would be better for me to pick a coach and have a fight first and then go for Ramirez. We’ll see.

Obviously you’ve worked with a number of coaches in your career, from Lochend (his amateur club) to GB, where they’ve got a variety of coaches to Shane as a pro, does it take time to get used to a new trainer and new methods?

Every trainer’s got their own methods and their own ways of training. You need a little bit of time to adjust and gel with the trainer and his methods, and the way he catches the pads or the way he trains and things like that.

You need a bit of time to gel and get used to each other.

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  • In addition to the fallout from losing the breach of contract court case, I think Josh will end up regretting the decision to go with Top Rank and having to take the really big fights in the US instead of the UK.

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