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Billy Dib Is Young,Hungry And Focused
Dibb is Young,Hungry And Focused
By Adam Santarossa: Billy “The Kid” Dib fights for the IBF Featherweight Title at the Sydney Olympic Park States Sports Centre on July 29th against Mexican challenger, Jorge Lacierva.
Billy took time out of his hectic training schedule to sit down and discuss the fight and the career of Billy “The Kid” in an exclusive interview with SecondsOut.
Below is a Q and A with Billy, who is talking to Adam Santarossa
SO: Billy we are only a few weeks away from the fight, how are preparations going?
BD: I’m in camp at the moment in preparation for this fight and I am leaving no stone unturned. I have a great trainer in Billy Hussein and some great sparring partners in Paul “Two Guns” Fleming, Joel Brunker and Daniel Iannazzo helping me out. Preparation has been fantastic so far and it’s only getting better.
SO: This fight is two and a half years in the making, your career hit somewhat of a crossroad following the Steven Luevano fight , which was for the WBO Featherweight title, there was much criticism from your performance, I know the HBO commentators were quite critical, what was the fallout like from that?
BD: At the end of the day, it was a fight in which I was in it, but I didn’t do enough to win it. Steven Leuvano was the champion and in order to beat the champion you have to go over there and wrestle the title away from him. It was a bit of a lacklustre performance from me, but if you look at the scorecards it was close and I didn’t even try to win the fight. After the fight I did cop a bit of criticism, which is accepted, I accept criticism, that’s fine because what it has done is helped me rebound and become a much better fighter, and now I’ve legitimately worked my way up the ladder without the help of Golden Boy Promotions and Oscar De La Hoya pushing me in the ratings and I’ve just worked really hard with my trainer Billy Hussein, my strength and conditioning coach and my family to secure this position. After the fight we had an agreement with Golden Boy Promotions to walk away from the contract and do my own thing back home and they wanted me to get back home, rebuild and they have really helped put this fight together, with the help of Michael Karagiannis my manager and Mike Altamura who is another great promoter in Australia. So the rebuilding has been done, the preparation is good and July 29th is the date I’m going to be world champion.
SO: Part of that rebuilding phase was linking with Billy Hussein, just how different is your work with Billy than with your previous trainers?
BD: Billy Hussein is a technician and that is something that I lacked a little bit in my game was a little bit of technician work, I was more of what you call a spoiler, who kind of came from different angles and things like that but Billy Hussein has really settled me down and made me a much stronger fighter and a much more complete fighter. Now I put a lot of pressure on my opponents and I try to take their heart away in the fight.
SO: You haven’t sat on your hands in the last two and a half years, you have certainly kept yourself busy, you’ve chased fights, and you have been chasing Chris John for a while. Obviously I’m sure you’re not looking past this fight, but is he someone still in your sights?
BD: Look, after this fight gets done, and I win this fight, god willing. after that we are going to sit down and talk to the team and I’m sure we are going to see Chris Johns team come out and offer to try and unify the titles and if it makes sense to the team and makes sense to my manager, then we will go ahead and do that, but I’m in no rush to call out names or anything like that, I am just fully focused on Jorge Lacierva, July 29th and just winning the title and making my family and all my supporters proud.
SO: Do you think sometimes people forget that you are only 25 years old?
BD: Yes, sometimes I forget I am 25 years old. If you look back at Anthony Mundine’s great career he turned professional at 25, and I’m 25 now and just about to fight for a world title. 25 and still have another ten years in this game I believe, I’m a clean living person and I’m 100% focused on the sport , and it’s a sport that I love and I realise that this is a sport that if you do not give 100%, it can be nasty. So until that day I will continue to box and another ten years reigning as a world champion, god willing, is what I want to see.
SO: You’ve had a pretty good career. You’re a former IBO Super Featherweight World Champion; you have fought in Vegas, Madison Square Garden and Atlantic City already. Whats the biggest lesson you have learnt so far?
BD: The biggest lesson I have learnt is I was so caught up in the hype before; I was caught up in the hype of being with the superstars and everything like that. Now I have settled down and realised at the end of the day , no one in the sport of boxing is going to be able to help you unless you help yourself , and I became reliant on those guys like Shane Mosley and Oscar and that but now I’m fully reliant on my trainer and my manager and I fully rely on my own skills and I know that there is a motto in boxing that “skills pay the bills” and that’s what I 100% work on, basically staying focused on what I’m doing and not worrying on what’s going on around me.
SO: Turning our focus to the fight, how much do you know about your opponent Jorge Lacierva?
BD: Jorge Lacierva has had a tremendous career. He has suffered a few defeats, but if you look closely at his record, out of his first ten professional fights, he lost four. Since then he has only lost three, and he has gone on to have something like 52 professional fights now, and I know he has 39 victories, 6 draws and 7 losses. In the last five years he has only suffered two losses and they were at the hands of Celestino Cabellero, who has been a multiple world champion and Cruz Carbajal , who again has been a world champion, so this guy has been battle tested, he’s a tough Mexican and I know they come to fight and this is a guy coming here realising, you know that he is 32 years of age and this will be his last shot at glory but unfortunately he is coming to our country and he is coming into a fight with a kid who is hungry and determined to come good on the promise.
SO: Do you think you’re fighting for respects on July 29, given you were originally meant to fight Mickey Garcia however he passed on the fight? Do you consider that disrespectful?
BD: At the end of the day, to me, no that was his decision because he was offered a TV deal by HBO. He wanted the fight to go ahead with me on June 4th, which wasn’t going to be fair, and wasn’t going to be enough time for the both of us to prepare. I mean he was already preparing for a fight trying to get me to fight on July 4. I said no, forget about it we will just go to purse bid and whoever wins the purse bid wins the rights to stage the fight, but they said no they couldn’t wait and they wanted to take that date on HBO. We made a clear decision that we were going to go ahead to the purse bid, his management decided to pull him out of the fight and we gave them our word that once we win this world title, and everything goes well, then we are happy to give Mickey Garcia an opportunity.
So I’m not fighting for respect, I’m fighting for my dream, this is my dream and I’m fighting for everything I stand for and focusing on living my dream and making sure it comes to fruition.
SO: I know your very active in social media on facebook and twitter, how can the fans get in touch with you online?
BD: Yes, I put all these videos up, I stay active on twitter and facebook to keep the fans updated because without the fans this couldn’t be possible, without you guys getting down to the venues and supporting us fighters then we wouldn’t be able to make a living. The guys can catch me @billydib on Twitter and you can catch me as “Billy Dib” on Facebook and the “Billy ‘The Kid’ Dib” fan page, any questions the fans may have I am happy to answer. I am always on there and I dedicate an hour every night to answer all the fans questions.
SO: The final question though Billy- Why will you win the World Title on July 29th?
BD: Why will I win the fight? Because I’m hungry, I’m determined, it’s been a long time coming and I have to come good on the promise. The prophecy has been that I was going to be champion of the world and I have to come good on that. I’m 100% focused and doing everything I can in training camp. This is the first time I’ve gone away on a training camp for a fight, I am leaving no stone unturned.
So if you want to come out there, July 29th and watch me become world champion and I promise you on July 29th, I am leaving with that belt!
Billy “The Kid” Dib vs. Jorge Lacierva for the IBF Featherweight World Title
July 29th at the Sydney Olympic Park State Sports Centre, Homebush.
Tickets can be purchased from www.ticketdirect.com.au
July 4, 2011