Smith vs Eggington: David Price talks about forging his future, American rivals, and hometown fight
Watch Price versus Kash Ali on the Liam Smith-Sam Eggington undercard in Liverpool on Saturday, from 7pm on Sky Sports Action.
By Chris Walker
Last Updated: 25/03/19 11:32am
David Price tells Sky Sports about overcoming heavyweight heartache, casting an eye over American rivals, and punishing preparation for a must-win night.
Liverpool's Price is finished with plotting. A heavyweight who once had his entire career mapped out has, in recent years, had to withdraw his long-focus and look at where he could be two or three fights down the line.
Now, after defeats to the likes of Alexander Povetkin and Sergey Kuzmin, both quality operators, Price is in a position where he just must win, and then see what happens next. It is not a spot that the popular heavyweight envisaged for himself, but career strategies rarely work in boxing, and Price is now fully aware of that.
Not too long ago, Price was positioned as the man to welcome in a post-Klitschko era following a decade of dominance from the Ukrainian monsters. Two consecutive defeats to Tony Thompson six years ago cast doubts on the 2008 Olympic bronze medallist, and after enduring stoppage losses to Erkan Teper and Christian Hammer between 2015 and 2017, Price's credentials to rule the division contained little value.
During that dark period, Price believed he was only one win away from a lucrative opportunity but, today, his ambitions are firmly fixed at getting through the next fight.
"Realistically, I've just got to keep winning and hope that something comes my way," revealed Price to Sky Sports as he enjoyed a relaxing moment away from the 30th training camp of his rollercoaster career.
"For too long I was looking too far ahead and hoping for a big fight with one of the champions, but the time has come where I can't do that. I've lost six times and no promoter is going to sit down with me and give me a long-term plan where I can be guided to such an opportunity. I've just got to take it one fight at a time, keep on winning, and then see where that takes me."
Despite conceding that fights with the likes of Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder are out of his reach, Price does not hold any fears when looking at the bracket below that features names such as imminent world-title challengers, Jarrell Miller and Dominic Breazeale.
Having already loitered on that scale in a losing, but game, effort against Povetkin last year, Price would certainly relish the opportunity to test himself in that region once more.
"I look at Breazeale and when I watch him I don't see anything that's worth worrying about in the slightest. The difference between me and him is the way that he's been guided to such a position, as he's on the verge of challenging for another heavyweight title.
"That's what you call brilliant management. He's someone who's never really impressed me, but you look at his record and he's only lost once and he's about to go into a fight with Wilder, after already fighting Joshua. He's someone I'd be confident of beating if we ever fought, but I'm not in any sort of position to be asking for that fight at this moment."
For now, Price's radar is dominated by the threat of Birmingham's Kash Ali. The unbeaten heavyweight has climbed the rankings via the small-hall circuit and has registered a number of useful wins over respected names of the lesser shows such as David Howe and Hari Miles.
A former sparring partner of Price, Ali is someone the Merseyside heavyweight knows reasonably well and he is confident he will know too much for the 27-year-old when they meet at the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool on March 30.
I know I'm ready for this fight and hopefully I can do a good job in this one and then the phone will go again.
"I'm not going to lie and tell you I know everything about him because I don't even think I've seen him fight live if I'm being honest.
"Everything I know about him is from sparring and we've done a lot of rounds together and what I've taken from those spars gives me enough confidence to believe in myself ahead of the fight.
"I've trained hard, my body feels battered, and I'm absolutely covered in bruises with how hard everything has been.
"I know I'm ready for this fight and, hopefully I can do a good job in this one and then the phone will go again, and I'll be back out again shortly afterwards."
Watch David Price versus Kash Ali on the Liam Smith-Sam Eggington undercard, which also features Anthony Fowler against Scott Fitzgerald in Liverpool on Saturday, from 7pm on Sky Sports Action.