"I'll be focused and confident in the ring one hundred percent. Nothing will be done to a madman, I will not throw myself at him like a madman, let my legs stand in the back, and my hands and head are in front. All will be thought of, because the fight is hired for 10 rounds, although his team does not agree to the twelfth – says Mariusz Wach, a heavyweight boxer, who today (at 11pm on TVP) will face Artur Szpilka in the fight tonight at gala "Knockout" Night of Boxing "at the Gliwice Arena.
Artur Gac, eurosport.interia.pl: Fans and people of the environment paid attention to their new personality before the duel with Artur Szpilka. To what extent, in Arthur's context, was this a tactical element thought out?
Mariusz Wach, heavyweight boxer: "When I said I was going to knock him down faster than Adam Kownacki, I took up this tactic. I knew Arthur would listen to him and he would give him some pressure because he would be so excited about that crap. What can I say, I just wanted to make him talk from time to time. Now, an hour before the fight, I can say officially. To me, it was just jokes.
Did you see that it worked and brought the intended effect?
"Certainly Arthur works with a psychologist, and I think they emphasize that my behavior would not offend him. However, since the first conference, I saw Arthur that can not be hidden behind a good face. Sometimes I saw he was beginning to sweat. I felt that he would like to say something or do something in my direction, but the psychologist or other people clearly inhibited him. I still saw in him a temper that others were trying to keep under control.
During the media training in Krakow, the hero was just you, and Szpilki ran off, officially due to a collapse of the car. How do you assess this situation?
"When I learned a few days before such an event would happen in Krakow, I immediately assumed that Arthur would be gone. I do not go into reasons, because it's up to him. However, I did not show up there just for the fans who came to see two participants in the fight of the night. And that fans, probably also in large part, came to him, his problem and he will be explained by the fans. Thank you all for the great reception.
The right treatment of the fans probably scored.
– I take this fight and the whole gala seriously. From the beginning, I was present in all media activities and I fulfilled all my duties. I think it should be all competitors.
"Fighting" for a fan in Krakow was even more important because you are from Lesser Poland. What balance of power do you expect in the bleachers?
"There will definitely be fans who do not like one or the other of us, and we will certainly hear a nasty cry of dissatisfaction when we go to the ring. I'm sure, that's why you have to put everything in your head, or at least I have that intention.
You can hear the calmness in your voice.
– I never pretended to be someone who was not and never took other actions. And in Arthur's case you can see the change by 180 degrees. Now the costumes showed up, some "blue bubbles" and other farts. He tries to be once, once and sometimes differently. I feel that at some point Arthur got lost in all of this. He really has a mess on his head and a boiler that is a shame to talk about. The old demons will always come back.
If you had your assumptions for this duel brought to a word, would it be an offense?
"I'm sure I will not give a hooray, but I'll take small steps forward, shorten the distance, and direct Arthur to the ropes or corners, and then he'll explode." There is no option that I would give Szpilka plenty of room to make me jump and score.
If you keep your word, the fight must be good.
"I repeat with each step that the ring will be smaller for him from minute to minute. At first, you know how Arthur will still be fresh, he will be able to jump a bit, but then – when adrenaline, tiredness and blows pass over him – he will approach the ropes.
How do you define the rate of this duel?
"In our backyard it will be one of the best fights of the last few years. From the point of view of the fans, two former World Cup contenders will face, but to be honest, it's just another duel.
For an unofficial number two in Polish heavyweight, behind Adam Kownacki?
– The most important is the direct confrontation, only then happens who is better. We remember Szpilka's fight with Tomasz Adamek, who Tomek was the favorite in the opinion of the majority, and the ring checked everything. Arthur, being in a lost position, showed wisdom in the ring and he had his five minutes, thanks to which he managed the fight for the world championship.
And before the fight today, many say that if Szpilka was to win against you, he would have to be in the ring as a self-service as with Adamek, who is all the time to hear the corner and the box tactically.
The thing is, I'm not like Adamek. It will be a big problem for Arthur. Many people pay attention to the difference in the age when I am older than Arthur for ten years and if that will not be a problem for me. I'm dispelling fears, it does not matter. I'll be focused and confident in the one hundred percent ring. Nothing will be done to a madman, I will not throw myself at him like a madman, let my legs stand in the back, and my hands and head are in front. Everything will be thought of, because the fight is hired for 10 rounds, although his team does not agree with twelve.
And finally: what about your participation in the Dariusz "Tiger" Michalczewski gala? It does not seem normal that you have not yet fought with Szpilka, and you're already announced as a participant on December 8th at the Ergo Arena.
– It is well known that this should not be so, because the battle with Arthur has not yet happened … Only after this gala the topic of the next one should appear. However, for now, the next fight I do not bother. The most important day is for me on November 10.
Some began speculating that Wach would use Szpilka when he thought about boxing a month later.
– There is no option.
And what would be the participation in the gala of Michalczewski with what you have in the contract with the promoter of Szpilka – Andrzej Wasilewski? Apparently, in case of victory, you have a mandatory rematch.
"It would not collide at all, because revenge would happen, if I remember correctly, in half a year." So it all depends on whether I will end the duel with Arthur without injuries, more serious injuries and what will be my state of mind. Anyway, I have not signed anything yet, I'm only after initial talks. I'll be trading on November 11th.