Mauricio Lara did quite a number on Josh Warrington back in February, when the little-known Mexican went over to London and stopped the then-unbeaten former featherweight titlist in nine rounds, a big upset that very few saw coming, or even thought was a real danger.
On Saturday, the two will rematch. This time, Warrington (30-1, 7 KO) will have true home field advantage in his hometown of Leeds, England, with a big crowd expected at Headingley Stadium. But Lara (23-2, 16 KO) says this one has become more personal due to comments from Warrington.
“I’m a very humble person. He won my respect in the first fight because he was number one in the world, but that’s no longer the case,” Lara said. “He doesn’t respect me and he has said many things about my dad. He made a mistake, believe me. He met a friendly version of me and look what happened.”
The 23-year-old Mexican says that he’ll have a different approach this time around, and he expects Warrington to likely be more cautious, too. But the end goal is very clear.
“I’ll win, but you’ll see a totally different Mauricio Lara. I’ll be a different person. I have more drive in this fight because Warrington has been saying a lot of things and he’ll regret it,” he said. “We think he’s going to be very careful with his face and his jaw so we’ll watch out with his strategy. But believe me, it doesn’t matter what strategy he has because I’m coming to destroy him.”
For Lara, it’s a chance to double up on notable wins over Warrington, and then move on to world title fights.
“I’m really happy because I know bigger fights are coming, better fighters. The number ones, that’s who I want,” he said. “I want to be in that spot and I’m going to fight for that. It’s great that a promoter like Matchroom believes in me and is giving me that opportunity. I’ll fight whoever. I want all the belts at 126 lbs and I’m going to get them. On September 4 I’ll be mean and he won’t know what’s hit him.”