Five months ago, after just five fights in his career unbeaten welterweight Cyrus Pattinson fought former British champion Chris Jenkins in a Fight of the Year contender. Their ten-round bout was ended halfway through the ninth when a combination of referee Bob Williams and Jenkins trainer Gary Lockett brought the Welshman’s brave efforts to an end.
Pattinson spoke to Boxing News recently about his opponent on Saturday Conah Walker, the battle with Jenkins, domestic rivalries and more.
What’s your thoughts about facing Conah Walker?
I’m really looking forward. It’s exciting. This is the first time really that I’m going into someone else’s backyard. Obviously, previous fights have been on neutral territory or people have been coming into my back yard. It’s going to be a lot more hostile and I’m going to enjoy that. I’m gonna thrive in it.
You’ve had six fights so far. How would you assess your own performances and progress so far?
I think I’m getting better with each fight. I’ve made progress quite quickly compared to when I look at my early fights over on [Team] GB and the progress such as did I change much, did I improve much. But six fights as a professional I think I’ve improved massively. And when I look back and watch each fight I can kind of see how much I’ve improved. I’ve took on quite a bit compared to a lot of the other fighters that I’ve turned pro with especially in my last two [they] have been quite big step ups. I can’t really complain too much so I’m looking to progress and keep going, keep chipping away one fight at a time and focus on Conah Walker.
Did the win against someone like Chris Jenkins so early in your career increase your self-belief?
Yeah, definitely. Every fight adds layers to myself, and I’ve proven myself right. I try not to bask in the feeling of success for too long. Even after the [Jorick] Luisetto fight I only had my house for about three-four weeks, so I went to my Nana and Grandad’s. I didn’t want to let it rob me of any ambition and wake up with the [IBO Continental] belt thinking I’ve made it. It was the same with the WBA [International] that went in the case and out the house as well. I try to keep my feet on the ground and keep chipping away one fight at a time.
Do you think you could have beaten Jenkins easier or did you need a tough fight like that?
I do feel like I could’ve won it easier. We thought we were gonna break him down a lot earlier than that. First three or four rounds I stuck with it, and we just had to keep chipping away as well. We knew it was gonna come… we believed it was gonna come. I was glad to show that side of me. I don’t really think anyone’s seen that side of me. A few people have in the amateurs but it’s a three-round fight. You get no time in the trenches. All of the people closest to me like my coach Graeme Rutherford, people in the gym knew that I’ve got the dog [in me] and I love fighting but I wanted to showcase that to a lot of other people as well. I loved and enjoyed every moment of it. I’m so proud to have been in a fight like that and I’m looking forward to having fights like that in the future but obviously I’ve got to use my head a bit more. If you get paid millions, you can have fights like that but not when you don’t need to.
Are you expecting something similar against Walker? What do you know about him?
He’s tough, he’s effective, he’s strong, he comes forward. He’s 100 per cent up for it. I know he’s coming to take my title. I can’t say too much but it’s gonna be an exciting fight. We are gonna end up head on and that’s the type of fights a lot of people wanna see and that will raise my profile and my stock, get a lot more support and just keep building that momentum.
It seems like once Ekow Essuman moves on and vacates his British title there’s an opening in the domestic welterweight scene for someone to take over.
Yeah, definitely. Ekow’s been at that level for quite a while. He’s won the British outright and beat everyone that’s been in his path. I can’t really say till I’m there in that moment. Am I gonna go for the British or is there gonna be a bigger domestic fight or better fights that are gonna be better financially. Is there gonna be other routes that are gonna be better for me. As much as I love the titles it’s got to make sense financially. See what fights are out there. I don’t really want to be remembered or be looked at by people for taking easy fights because I’ve never really done it in my career.
Have there been any domestic fights you’ve enjoyed. It’s something that always seems to grab the public’s imagination.
Probably one of the most recent ones, well I wouldn’t say recent, the Groves-Froch fights. They were two massive fights.
Do you want a big domestic fight and a rivalry?
Maybe. I don’t know about rivalry. I don’t know if that’s something I have the personality for. There’s too much talking. I fight and I’m very respectful afterwards. Fortunately, the people I’ve fought so far have been similar. I don’t know if I’m that spiteful. Me and Chris Jenkins could’ve done a trilogy to be honest! But I don’t want to be just having big fights abroad in America and taking on their greatest fighters. I want them to be on home soil as well.