Daniel Dubois claims he doesn’t need Tyson Fury’s praise to boost his confidence.
The world heavyweight king has hailed Dubois’ punching power, claiming he is like Ivan Drago from Rocky IV because of the way he breaks his opponents.
Dubois was pleased by Fury’s comments – even if he hasn’t heard of Drago – and has huge respect for the unbeaten WBC and Ring magazine title holder.
But he claims his words do not give him any more self-belief because he already has confidence in his ability.
Dubois, 22, knows he has much potential and is determined to work hard under trainer Martin Bowers’ tutelage to realise it.
“I don’t know who Ivan Drago is,” he told Mirror Sport. “But, yeah, it’s nice when someone like Tyson Fury praises you.
“He’s at the top of the tree, the No 1 in the division, so that’s good.
“He’s someone I like as a fighter. He beat the man in Wladimir Klitschko to become world champion the first time and then he beat Deontay Wilder to do it again.
“It was the way he beat Wilder the second time and he beat him at his own game. He showed he can win fights any way.
“It doesn’t boost me, though. I don’t need people to say nice things about me to boost my confidence.
“I’m confident in my ability and what I can achieve if I continue to work hard and listen to those around me.”
Dubois has the talent and power to go all the way and will take the next step on his journey to the top when he faces Ricardo Snijders tonight in the BT Sport Studios.
Snijders is a late replacement for German Erik Pfeifer in Dubois’ tune-up fight for his October 24 showdown with Olympic silver medallist Joe Joyce at The O2.
Although Snijders has lost just one of his 19 fights, the Dutchman should become the 15th straight victim of Dubois’ pro career.
“The late change has not affected me too badly,” said Dubois, who has 13 stoppages from his 14 wins. “We’re used to this in boxing and I just have to be professional and handle it the best I can.
“When we step in the ring, it will just be me and him. I won’t take him lightly and I know what I have to do.”
Dubois continued to train during lockdown and fortunately had moved into his new home in Essex with his family just before the restrictions came in.
He trained every day with his sister Caroline, who is tipped for gold at the Tokyo Olympics, and younger brother and Repton amateur star Prince.
“We’ve got a nice new pad in Essex, it’s good,” he said. “We moved in just before lockdown, so it was perfect timing really.
“It’s been great having the family’s company and we trained together every day.
“We lived in the gym. We respect boxing and we know how hard you have to work.
“Lockdown was good for us and now it’s time to focus on my next fight.”
Dubois v Snijders is on BT Sport 1 from 7pm.