Peter Fury – Savannah Marshall is a machine
Trainer Peter Fury has been offered a lot of plaudits for the work he’s done with Savannah Marshall but he does not want the credit.
Ahead of Marshall’s huge grudge clash with Claressa Shields, Fury says Marshall’s progress is down to the fighter and her coming of age in the pro ranks.
“I just think she’s developed,” Fury said. “She’s had a lot of experience in the ring, she’s been in big events, she’s a world champion, all of these things are factors. She’s of the right mindset, the right maturity now to understand as the events get bigger and larger that it’s just another day. She’s got to focus on the fight and she’s got one thing on her mind and that’s Saturday night. The hype around it and everything else, she’s just enjoying the moment and she’s excited. The main things is, she’s expecting a tough, gruelling, hard fight, and that’s what she’s trained for.”
Fury and Marshall arrived in London on Tuesday evening ahead of the public workout and fight week activities and Peter believes Marshall deserves respect for the growth of women’s boxing in the UK, and for her part in bringing a huge night to the O2 Arena.
“I think it’s a testament to Savannah,” Fury added. “She’s come through and she’s been just over five years as a professional and this is her time. She’s as ready as she’s ever going to be and she’s looking forward to this fight.”
The entire sport is, too. It has captured the imagination, with people excited about the clash of style, figuring Shields is the better boxer and Marshall the bigger hitter. But when asked what type of fight he’s anticipating, Fury gave an insight into the mindset he’s instilled in his fighter.
“I always go in expecting the worst-case scenario, that’s it’s going to be a hard fought two minutes every round, she’s got to dig deep,” Fury said. “She [Savannah]’s had a brutal training camp so she’s ready for whatever comes. It’s going to be very interesting and it’s definitely going to be hotly contested.”
Shields has been talking the talk, and while Fury thinks Shields might not be quite as good as she thinks she is, she does rate the America star highly.
“I do rate her as a good world champion, she’s achieved good things and it’s good to have that self-confidence,” Peter went on. “But you can sometimes be overconfident and Saturday night we will see just how good she really is.”
Much has been made of Marshall’s disputed amateur victory over Shields more than a decade ago, but Peter does not think that will play any kind of a role on Saturday.
“I don’t think it’s relevant,” the trainer continued. “The only reason it would be relevant is if it plays on Claressa’s mind too much, that has an effect but apart from that it’s nothing really. They’re two different people and Savannah is a machine compared to what she was when she was an amateur. It’s a different world.”
It’s a huge night for boxing and neither woman would have experienced anything like it before. Fury claims Marshall can and will take it all in her stride.
“It’s not going to get to Savannah,” Fury insisted. “That’s not a thought in my mind. I know where Savannah’s at and she’s just got one thing on her mind and that’s a hard fight. She’s in the hurt business and she sees Claressa in her way. The only way Savannah is getting beat is by the better person, it won’t have anything to do with the occasion, the night or anything else. Savannah is ready and she’s confident, she’s got that steely mentality where she knows she’s going to get what she wants.”
Popular assessments and predictions are that Shields will win if it goes to points, but if there’s a stoppage, Marshall could get it. Fury doesn’t see things quite so plainly, even though he understands why many think along those lines.
“I can see why people are coming to any conclusion, it’s a good fight and that’s why it’s captured the imagination of the public because it’s not a gimmie fight,” he concluded. “It’s a proper world-level contested fight, it could go either way and it just depends on who’s got more on the night, who wants it most and that’s it. We will see a lot of things in there. They’ve got their plans and we’ve got ours and ultimately it’s down to them two when the bell goes.”