For the majority of middleweights that fill the ranks of one of the hottest divisions in the Queensbury Boxing League the name Lewis Pinto would not be at the top of their future opponents list, but for one man the chance to take on the formidable champion was something he had been looking forward to for quite some time, and on Saturday November 26th Wallington's Lawrence Lofts will step through the ropes at the league's final promotion of the year to challenge the self proclaimed Pitbull for his British middleweight title. The league caught up with Lofts during his preparations for the highly anticipated clash to find out why the clash was so appealing and what his thoughts are on his imminent battle.
QBL: Hi Lawrence, Thanks for taking time out to chat with us before your upcoming title challenge with Lewis Pinto.
LL: That's no problem, I'm always happy to talk about boxing.
QBL: November 26th is a date I know you must have etched in your brain now as we move closer to your challenge for the league's British Middleweight title, tell us a little about how your preparations are going for the contest.
LL: The preparations are going great, I only took a week off after my last fight so my weight is perfect and I feel really sharp. I've discovered a proper diet and I can feel the benefits every day. Life is good!
QBL: For many of the league's other domestic middleweights Lewis Pinto would not be their first choice of opponent on their league debut, but you've boxed on a number of other shows around the country picking up a title at Super Middleweight and seem to be relishing your chance to face the champion. What is it about this fight that has got you buzzing and why the desire to face the man many want to avoid?
LL: It's a funny one, I've always wanted to take him on, he brings excitement and a big crowd as well. If ever I tell someone around town that I'm a fighter his name gets mentioned. So there's that natural desire to prove myself against a top fighter. Throw the British Title and TV coverage in and this is a dream come true for me.
QBL: I know you've been ringside to see the champions last few fights so you are going into this contest with your eyes open, from what you've seen in those fights what do you think you will need to do to wrest the belt away from the champion?
LL: Yeah I've seen him on his good and bad nights. Running from this man is pointless. Hit him hard, and hit him often. Take your lumps, and lump him back. Punch him on the chin. Have I given away my game plan? There's more to it than that of course, it isn’t easy.
QBL: Pinto is renowned for his aggressive marauding style which has seen him finish many of his previous opponents inside the distance, for those unfamiliar with your style, what does Lawrence Lofts bring to the table and how will you be approaching the bout.
LL: I bring the best chin in the division. People hit me, from middleweights to cruiserweights, and nothing happens. I hit them back, and bad things happen. I don't quit and I don't get tired, I should be sponsored by Duracell
QBL: This will be somewhat of a local derby as you both hale from the same town in Surrey so not only will there be the belt on the line but also the bragging rights of the area as well. Does this add any extra pressure to this fight or does it just add to the excitement for you?
LL: I love the pressure, who wouldn't want their name up in lights? I've worked so hard to get here so you have to enjoy all the good things that come with it. The local thing is great. Wallington doesn't have much to get excited about, the last big thing that happened there was KFC opening.
QBL: I know you've wanted to fight Pinto for a number of years now but speaking with you its clear there is lots of respect there towards the champion and there’s no animosity towards him. Is this just you wanting to test yourself against the best or is there something else driving you to take this fight?
LL: Listen, let's make this clear, you won't catch me bad-mouthing Lewis, he's a good fighter and a good guy. To my mind, he's the biggest name and the biggest fight out there for me. The belt drives me on of course; taking my medals and trophies home to my kids is the best feeling on Earth and this is the biggest prize I could go for. This is my night to shine
QBL: And finally when you're standing there on the night in that ring waiting for the first bell to sound, what’s going to be going through your mind and how do you see this fight playing out.
LL: My mind goes very clear before the fight; I'm not a big one for nerves. I see this as the best fight of the night and maybe the year. I won't have to go looking for him so it's going to be fun in there. Lofts in a thriller.
QBL: Thanks for taking the time to chat Lawrence and we look forward to seeing you in the ring on the 26th for a very exciting encounter
LL: My pleasure, thanks to Queensbury and all the supporters for making this so special.