Marlon Tapales feels he has two-belt world super-bantamweight champion Murodjon Akhmadaliev of Uzbekistan all figured out.
In the eyes of the Filipino challenger, Akhmadaliev is the ultimate punching machine, fundamentally sound and a force to be reckoned with.
But the reigning World Boxing Association and International Boxing Federation titleholder is far from invincible.
“I have full confidence that I have what it takes to beat him,” Tapales told Daily Tribune from his Las Vegas training camp.
Tapales guns for Akhmadaliev’s WBA and IBF 122-lb straps on 8 April in San Antonio, Texas.
The clear underdog, Tapales swears he can ruin Akhmadaliev’s party plans.
“I have watched his fights and seen some flaws I can exploit during the fight,” added Tapales, who will soon start the crucial sparring stage of the preparations with the arrival of Jerwin Ancajas from the Philippines.
Also serving as Tapales’ regular sparmate is Jade Bornea, who is also slated to fight for the world title in April.
Armed with a 36-3 win-loss record with 18 knockouts, Tapales, a lefty like Akhmadaliev, briefly reigned as World Boxing Organization bantamweight champion several years ago.
Currently based in the Southern California area, Akhmadaliev, who had a stellar amateur career, has an 11-0 card with eight knockouts.