Las Vegas or Manchester? Portsmouth's Mikey McKinson is not bothered as he puts in final preparations ahead of Przemyslaw Runowski battle

Mikey McKinson had ambitions of putting in pre-fight preparations in Las Vegas - but instead ended up on a brief Manchester training camp.

By Lewis Mason
Tuesday, 3rd August 2021, 12:12 pm
Mikey McKinson, right, spent some time with former WBA world lightweight champion Ant Crolla during his training stint in Manchester
Mikey McKinson, right, spent some time with former WBA world lightweight champion Ant Crolla during his training stint in Manchester

Yet, the Pompey Problem insists it doesn't matter where he does his training - because he has no doubt he'll defend his WBO Global welterweight title against Poland's Przemyslaw Runowski on August 14.

Coronavirus pandemic travel restrictions made making it across the pond for a training block impossible for McKinson.

Instead, he headed north for an 11-day stay to put in the finishing touches ahead of another big night in Matchroom main man Eddie Hearn's back garden on the third and final Fight Camp undercard in just under two weeks.

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It allowed McKinson, 27, to spend time with former world WBA lightweight champion Anthony Crolla while also putting in some sparring rounds - where he came up against British super lightweight title challenger Sam Maxwell among others.

The Pompey Problem has now returned to his home city and is 'excited' to be able to put on another show on a big boxing stage and stretch his unbeaten 20-0 record to 21-0 against Runwoski.

McKinson said: ‘I was up there (Manchester) for 11 days staying on my own and stuff and sparring while up there.

‘My dad came up and met me for two nights, but I was a lone ranger up there, it was all good and worth it.

‘When I have training camps I can’t really spend them in Portsmouth. I’ve got to be out of my comfort zone, it’s all worth it.

‘I got some good rounds with Sam Maxwell when I was up there - he’s fighting for the British title two weeks after me.

‘I had some good rounds with him while I was up there - I sparred some other good lads as well.

‘I’m just excited, I’ve come back and I’m flying at the moment, everything is coming into place.

‘It was just all of the travel restrictions and stuff like that (couldn’t travel to Las Vegas).

‘I couldn’t find out the right information I needed and stuff to go, so the safest bet was to not go.

‘That’ll come, that’s there when things go back to normal, I wouldn’t have enjoyed it anymore or any less. It’s work so it make no difference to me.’

McKinson puts his WBO Global crown on the line on the back of his biggest career win to date.

The tricky southpaw defeated Chris Kongo to claim the title on the Dillian Whyte v Alexander Povetkin II undercard in March in Gibraltar live on Sky Sports Box Office.

However, despite this time being placed as the fight favourite, McKinson reckons Runowski is a tougher opponent than Kongo.

But the Pompey Problem says that still won't stop him making it 21-0 in the pro game.

He said: ‘I see this fight as a another step up from Chris Kongo, I’m expecting a tougher fight, the bookies have bottled it this time - they’ve not gone against me.

‘Runowski is a tougher opposition than Chris Kongo - that’s how I see it. The job stays the same, just because I’m the favourite the job stays the same, the focus is still the same and it’s going to be the same result. I’m really confident.’