Kell Brook’s Sheffield world title defence: Jo Jo ready for battle

Kell Brook and promoter Eddie Hearn
Kell Brook and promoter Eddie Hearn

Jo Jo Dan has no concerns about fighting in Kell Brook’s backyard on Saturday.

The Romanian born welterweight says campaigning twice in Turkey gave him more than enough experience to cope with Sheffied Arena followers of the IBF world title holder.

“In Turkey, the atmosphere in the arena and the way the fans reacted didn’t bother me all,” he said. “I was concerned about what happened in the ring.

“In the ring, it’s him and me. The fans can scream or do what they want. It gave me confidence because even with big pressure I can perform. I think I’ll do a good job.”

His trainer Pierre Bouchard added: “He won’t be surprised if he gets boos or even punches when he goes to the ring. We know how to deal with that.

“I really trust the British commission. They’re not kooky like Turkey, or even Germany sometimes is a bit tricky. When we’re in the ring, we know the crowd will be against us, but I trust the judges.”

Dan received his long sought-after Canadian Citizenship recetly and next month his wife Anca is due to give birth to their second child.

“I was so proud now I’m Canadian” he told the Brampton Guardian. “I hope we keep this going in England to make it good. Things are getting better. I think I’m on the good way. I’m very thankful for everything.”

Dan’s camp says he can take inspiration from Otis Grant, the Montreal middleweight who went to Sheffield in 1997 and beat Ryan Rhodes for the WBO title.

n On Saturday at the Metrodome, Barnsley, home town boy lightweight Ben Wager lost to Kevin Hooper, Sheffield super welter Wayne Reed lost to Simone Lucas, super featherweight Jack Churchill beat Qasim Hussain, cruiserweight Tony Cruise beat Jason Jones, middleweight Marcus Morrison beat Rob Brown.