Alfredo Angulo on sparring with Andre Ward



Gearing up for his March 8 clash with Canelo Alvarez, Alfredo Angulo has enlisted the help of two top-notch sparring partners.

While sessions with former junior welterweight beltholder Amir Khan have helped Angulo to make adjustments for speed, the junior middleweight said sessions against RING 168-pound champion Andre Ward have improved his resolve against a larger fighter with superior skills and technique.

"Andre Ward is such an incredible boxer in terms of technique, and not just as a fighter. Where you would consider me more of the brawler, Andre Ward is the perfect technical boxer," Angulo told The Mexicali, Mexico, native shares California-based trainer Virgil Hunter with Ward and Khan.

"I've always sparred with bigger and taller fighters, but the difference with Andre is that Andre just has beautiful technique, and style, and an incredible jab. You can only improve as a fighter when you have to defend against a jab like Andre's. That's probably the biggest thing that I've learned from Andre."

Angulo (22-3, 18 knockouts) will face countryman Alvarez (42-1-1, 30 KOs) on Showtime Pay Per View from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, site of Alvarez's first career loss, to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in September.

In his last bout, in June, Angulo scored two knockdowns during a brutal and dramatic 10th-round stoppage loss to Erislandy Lara.

"Andre is actually the one who offered to spar with me, and to help me to prepare for this fight, because he knows how important this fight is for me," said Angulo. "So it has been a great experience, because he's so talented, and he's someone I admire. He has truly inspired me. I'm very grateful for that."

[Translated by Lucy Haro]

Photo: Gene Blevins/Hoganphotos-Golden Boy Promotions