Natasha Jonas is adamant that her power will shock Mikaela Mayer when they fight on January 20.
Jonas defends her IBF welterweight title against the USA’s Mayer at the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool, live on Sky Sports.
The champion leapt up to super-welterweight from super-feather and unified three 154lb world titles in 2022. Jonas moved down a division to win the IBF belt earlier this year.
Mayer unified super-featherweight titles but has only just risen to welter, while now Jonas in contrast is more established at the weight.
The Liverpudlian is certain a differential in punch power will favour her.
“I think so,” Jonas told Sky Sports. “I know what it feels like to take and absorb those shots from the bigger girls and I just don’t see her hurting me in that sense.
“There’s lots of different variables that she’s going to have to deal with and one of them is getting punched by a naturally bigger and stronger girl.”
Jonas is 39 years old but still performing remarkably well at world level. She believes Mayer has made a miscalculation by taking this challenge.
“She was 142lbs [in her last fight]. That’s another five pounds you’ve got to add and still perform. Was she the same person at 140lbs that she was at 135lbs? I don’t believe so,” Jonas said.
“There’s a whole science behind it. You’ve got to get your body used to carrying that extra weight. For so long she’s been used to being 130lbs.
“All of a sudden saying here’s an extra 15lbs, 17lbs, go and fight the same way you did then – no. It takes time to get used to. There’s a lot of adaptations you have to go through. I’ve managed to do that in fights, from [Chris] Namus to [Marie-Eve] Dicaire and then going back down to [Kandi] Wyatt.”
Jonas does still respect Mayer’s abilities. “She’s got a good amateur pedigree,” the IBF champion said. “I thought she was unfortunate against [Alycia] Baumgardner. She uses her assets really well. She’s got good shot selection, good work rate.
“I just believe whether she wants to fight or she wants to box, whichever way she wants to do it, I’m better.”
Mayer might be expecting to go in and use her speed, work rate and relative youth against her. But suggestions that Jonas is ‘too slow’ have stung the champion’s pride.
“What I will say is I’m accurate. I think there’s a lot being made of volume of punches and how ‘slow’ I am. But they land,” the Liverpudlian said.
“People have said it in the past but regardless of what they say, they land. Whether that’s because they’re so slow they can’t avoid them, I don’t know what it is but they land.
“I respect her a lot. I respect what she comes with, I respect what she brings, like I do with everyone and I’ll be training to the best of my ability to make sure that I win.”