• Heavyweight

Bunce: Flintoff will definitely get KOd

ESPN staff
September 11, 2012
Andrew Flintoff will fight at heavyweight on November 30 © Getty Images

Andrew Flintoff's crudeness in the ring will cause him to suffer a knockout defeat early in his professional boxing career, according to Steve Bunce.

Flintoff, the former England cricketer, will make his boxing debut in a heavyweight contest on November 30 in Manchester, having spent months polishing himself up with Shane and Barry McGuigan.

It is not known who he will face, but ESPN understands the plan is to test him against creditable opposition from the outset.

"I 100% believe it's not a gimmick, I believe it's real," Bunce told ESPN. "However, he's been training with the McGuigans - Shane and Barry - for a very long time, and in the film I saw of him, assuming it was recent, he looked extremely raw.

"There's one thing about very raw, six-foot-plus heavyweights: they get hit on the chin, and they go over. He may blast someone out in his first or second fight, but for sure, somewhere within about five fights, he will get hit on the chin. It happens to big fellas that are a bit too game for their own good.

"It's 100% he will get knocked out at some point. I was surprised how raw he was - but then he's only been in the gym for four months. He was crude: big right hand, a chin right up in the air.

"It's hard training heavyweights anyway. Heavyweights are different beasts, and novice heavyweights are even more of a beast to train. You can't take training skills from super-bantamweights and light-heavyweights, and then apply them to heavyweights. It's really hard.

"Presuming the footage I've seen is recent, I haven't seen an improvement in Freddie - I've only seen a raw Freddie. They've seen a massive improvement probably from the first day working with him - and, four months on, that's a good fighter to them. He's not a good fighter to me, having seen him for the first time.

"A source close to Freddie I spoke to last week said I would be surprised at the quality of the opponent. Which suggests this is someone we know. I think that's an even bigger risk. I would put him in with another raw heavyweight of the same height."

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