MANILA, Philippines – Ghana’s Joshua “the Grand Master” Clottey thinks that things are going his way ever since he was chosen to fight Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao on March 13, even if he experienced a setback in his training camp.
“I never expected to be in such a huge fight like this, which is the biggest pay day of the year. It's like a miracle, like something is being worked out. It's like a miracle, something is coming, and I'm so happy,” Clottey told Lem Satterfield of Boxing FanHouse.
The Ghanaian stated another reason for saying that his chance to fight Pacquiao is like a miracle.
“They never talked about me moving to a catchweight. We're fighting at the welterweight limit, so it's like, a miracle,” he noted.
Pacquiao will defend his World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight crown on Saturday (Sunday in Manila) at the Cowboys, Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Clottey stepped in the March 13 fight card after talks for the Pacquiao vs Floyd Mayweather, Jr. blockbuster bout collapsed.
However, the Ghanaian’s trainer, Godwin Nii Dzanie Kotey, was denied a United States work visa.
Despite such setback, Clottey and his manager, Vinnie Scolpino, found a new trainer in Lenny DeJesus.
“The training is going fine, because it's easy with me to connect with anybody. Lenny, he's a nice person. He talks to me. Lenny talks to me about boxing,” said Clottey.
“Lenny can tell me things like, ‘Go into the ring, go to his body.’ If I go to the body, and it doesn't work, I have to change my whole plan in the ring.”
Focused only on training
Clottey (35-3, with 20 knockouts) elaborated on his training camp in Florida.
“When I'm in the gym, that's the time I fight more,” he stated.
“And you know one thing, I don't like any thing being around me when I'm training. That's the only thing I think about is the training. Nothing makes me happier now than thinking about the training and the fight, and believe me, I've trained so, so, so, so hard.”
He added that he is happy with DeJesus, his cut man during his fight against Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto last June. Cotto beat Clottey via split decision at the Madison Square Garden in New York.
Cotto then yielded his WBO welterweight title last November to Pacquiao (50-3-2, 38 KOs) at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.