Rocky Fielding has laughed off claims made by British title rival Callum Smith and his trainer Joe Gallagher that he is 'mentally weak.'
Fielding (21-0-KO12) takes on his Liverpool rival Smith (17-0-KO12) for the super-middleweight crown live on Sky Sports on Saturday night and the two camps - in particular Gallagher and Fielding's trainer Oliver Harrison - have been sparring verbally in the build-up.
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Fielding has taken a back seat in comparison but bristled at suggestions he will struggle to cope with the occasion.
He told Sky Sports: "What Oliver says is his opinion but as for Joe talking about my mental strength, he doesn't know me or anything about me so I don't know how he can mention things like that.
"He can say what he wants. He obviously wants to talk about me and put little things out about me. I'll leave him to it because it's not about Joe or what he says - it's about me and Callum on the night performing to our best.
As for Joe talking about my mental strength, he doesn't know me or anything about me so I don't know how he can mention things like that.
"I've done a lot of tickets myself and coming out in that arena, walking out and looking around and seeing that many people, it'll push me even more. When I'm in the ring and we're getting it on and people are screaming my name, it'll push me more. My mental strength's good."
Fielding is a big underdog in the eyes of most pundits and more tellingly the bookmakers - Smith is generally a 1/4 shot - but the 28-year-old is adamant he has what it takes to upset the odds.
"It's my time to bring it home," he said. "It's going to be a good fight and the fans are in for a good treat. It's a massive fight in my career at this stage, and the same for Callum. The winner moves on to world honours and there are massive fights out there in the super-middleweight division.
"That's my aim. To fight for a world title and become a world champion. I'm a gym friend of Martin Murray and I'm flying out to watch him pull that one off. James DeGale is IBF champion and I'm ranked in the top five. That's a big fight down the line.
"I'm fully focused on Callum Smith and Saturday night, though. I'm not looking past him."
Fielding's showdown with Smith tops the bill on the night, with Scott Cardle's British lightweight defence against Sean Dodd chief support.