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Wladimir Klitschko vs Alex Leapai: Queensland underdog promises to KO 'glass jaw' champ

Lee Cleveland Updated
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RING Magazine/Lineal and WBA/WBO/IBF Heavyweight Champion Wladimir Klitschko (61-3, 51 KO) is set to face Samoan Aussie Alex Leapai (30-4-3, 24 KO) on April 26 in Germany. Although it will take place in Europe, Klitschko vs Leapai will undoubtedly be one of the biggest sporting events in Australian history.

"It ain't going the distance. I promise you one of us is going to be knocked out, but it isn't going to be me," the challenger told BoxingScene.

(Image courtesy of News Limited)

"I don't believe this guy has faced anybody with the power that I've got.

Likening himself to fight legend Mike Tyson, the 34 year old heavyweight added:

"Tyson was only a short fighter and he dominated for so many years. He had the power and I've got the power too."

A Samoan-born Australian, Leapai thrust himself into the heavyweight picture by defeating Denis Boytsov (then 33-0) in November 2013.

At the time, Boytsov was the WBO's mandatory challenger for Klitschko but when Leapai defeated the Russian, Alex was named mandatory challenger even though the Boytsov-Leapai bout was not an official elimination bout.

Leapai has wins over fringe contenders Owen Beck, Darnell Wilson and Travis Walker - all in 2010 - but Boytsov is the only legitimate top contender he's defeated.

The relatively unknown Leapai and his trainer, Noel Thornberry, are not impressed with the champion's credentials, insisting Klitschko is not durable and that his record has been padded by unworthy opponents in recent years.

''Klitschko has a glass jaw. For sure. We'll find out on the night. He can get fired up but on the night we're going to bring it home. I don't care what he's training for, he's going to feel it."

How would Alex feel should he win the lineal heavyweight title?

"It would be a dream come true. It's all about reaching that, and proving to the kids out there that anything is possible," replied the stocky Leapai who will be giving up seven inches in height to the more experienced Klitschko.

Alex Leapai facts
  • At 6'0" / 183cm, Leapai is short for the modern heavyweight
  • Reach:75 /190cm
  • Stance: Orthodox
  • Nationality: Australian
  • Most recent fight weight: 244¾ lbs (Nov 2013)
  • Growing up, his inspiration was fellow Samoan heavyweight David Tua
  • Served jail time for assault but has turned his life around by getting involved with the church and the fight game
  • His day job? Alex is a delivery driver in Logan City, Queensland, Australia
  • Guaranteed purse for the Klitschko fight: $1.5 million

Video: Alex Leapai vs Travis Walker CrazyTKO Round 4


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