Boxing hall of fame beckons
EMERALD'S three-time Australian heavyweight champion Colin Wilson is out to make history. Hall of fame history as a matter of fact.
The 39-year-old boxing veteran will face his hard-hitting challenger Michael Kirby at the Gold Coast next month, in the fight for his next Australian heavyweight title.
Wilson is already among a select group of boxers and a win in October would elevate his boxing credentials to a whole new level.
"There are only four of us now who have ever won it (Australian title) three times in the history of Australian boxing," Wilson said.
"They've guaranteed me if I win that I get my little claim to fame (Hall of Fame inductee) and there's an 85% chance they will able to get me a shot at the WBF world title.
"I'm going to win this one. My mind is set."
Despite having never fought Kirby before, the Emerald southpaw said he has a pretty good idea of what to expect from his challenger when the first bell sounds.
"He's a big strong fella, that's why they call him the Iron Rhino," Wilson said. "He just keeps walking forward all night."
Wilson also expects his unorthodox stance will prove advantageous against the Rhino.
"It works in my favour yeah, I don't think he (Kirby) has more than 30 fights and most of those have been against orthodox fighters so definitely beneficial to me," Wilson said
"Being able to move differently, fight differently."
While his pre-match preparation seems to be pretty much under control now, it wasn't always smooth sailing according to Wilson.
"I used to get real nervous and I would be under the table going to sleep two minutes before the fight," he said.
"I wasn't fit and I was just trying to get myself in the zone.
"But now being fit I'm keen to get out there and just punch on."
About 12 months ago Wilson was as far from the boxing ring as he could have imagined, with his leg up on a hospital bed recovering from knee surgery.
He's under no illusions that his fitness will have to be up to scratch if he is to match it with Kirby and make amends for his last Australian title fight with former Olympian Justin Whitehead.
The split-points loss to Whitehead was a wake-up call for Wilson, setting him on the path to the bigger and bolder future he sees today.
"Usually I was in the pub three days before a fight and just go on from there," Wilson said.
"But this fight I had trained for six weeks beforehand, I got off the drink and did things serious.
"For me to experience that whole seriousness of the game was a win for me. I've banked it in so I can do it all the time now… I'm getting a little bit older now so I need to."
With 65 career fights to his name, spanning the better part of two decades, you would think retirement would be something the seasoned fighter would be contemplating. Well, not Wilson.
"I haven't achieved enough yet, I don't think I have shown myself enough yet," he said.
"I'll fight 'til I'm 60.
"As long as I can still spell my name and be coherent I'll be right."
Wilson's Australian heavyweight title will feature as one of five scheduled for the night at the QT Gold Coast Hotel, Surfers Paradise on October 7.