“It’s about separating myself from the rest, you see a lot of fighters and they are boring, they talk the same and they walk the same”
As he prepares to embark on the next chapter of his career under the Queensbury Boxing promotional banner, Amin Jahanzeb is tenacious in his ambitions to make it to the top of boxing.
The current lockdown isn’t something that has hindered the mindset or halted the progress of the undefeated featherweight, who takes pride in not letting discipline diminish in between fights.
Speaking to BBTV he explained: “You can’t celebrate right now by drinking and partying when you haven’t made it yet. How can you celebrate and put on weight when there are harder tasks to come?
“I know that after each fight a harder one is to come, so I need to be in shape and I know that when the smoke clears, I’ll be standing.
“I’m always training all year round, there aren’t any excuses. It’s Ramadan now as well so I’m fasting, which makes it difficult but there are only a few days left and I have been training all the way through it.
“I’m hungry for success and when you fast it cleanses your body, so when I get back to normality and fighting begins again, I’ll be ready, I’m on my fight weight now already.
“I walk around at that all year round, so I don’t have to train to lose weight or get fitter, I stay in shape and I’m just learning every day.“
Signing with legendary promoter Frank Warren served to elevate Jahanzeb’s desire, as he revealed the first thing he did following the announcement was turn his phone to aeroplane mode, disengage from his social platforms and start training.
“It’s very exciting. A kid coming where I’m coming from having grown up with nothing apart from a good family and hard work, making waves in a hard sport like boxing, I’m so grateful. Many people do this for years and they still don’t get to where I am, so my hard work is paying off, but not just the hard work it’s about smart work – the things I’m doing in the ring are things most people don’t do.
“It’s about separating myself from the rest, you see a lot of fighters and they are boring, they talk the same and they walk the same. Now, it’s time to show it on Frank Warren’s platform and I’m so excited for the future.”
A devotion to mastering techniques and learning as much as possible about the sport of boxing is a trait that the enigmatic featherweight feels will be pivotal in his path to the top.
It’s why he was so eager to emphasise his gratitude for the apprenticeship he served during his first seven fights on the small hall circuit. He stated: “What you really learn in the small hall shows is the raw insight of boxing – how it really is a business and that if you don’t sell tickets, you don’t fight. You have to be marketable, presentable and entertaining.
“This is the second step of the ladder, the first was getting into the professional game and getting onto the small hall shows. Now, I have stepped it up, I have earnt my way up to Queensbury Promotions and I’m on a bigger platform with them.
“The second step of the ladder is here, I just have to climb it properly by fighting and training harder than ever. As I keep moving forward people are loving what I’m doing, I’ve just got to keep my eyes on the prize, keep winning and not get sidetracked.”
With his unorthodox style and swagger, it’s perhaps unsurprising that he spent time in Sheffield at the Ingle Gym, a place renowned for allowing flair and expression to thrive.
Looking back on the experience, Jahanzeb recalled: “I trained with Bari (Kid Galahad). At first I went there as a sparring partner and then they kept calling me back, so I thought this is my foot in the door now.
“But, I sparred him as a southpaw and at the time I had two wins as a pro and I had never stayed southpaw for longer than ten seconds. I remember when they asked me if I was a southpaw I said yes, throwing myself in at the deep end.
“I learnt so much from sparring him (Galahad) and I got called out to Toronto to spar him for one of his world title eliminators, I got to spar Lee Selby and few of the other quality guys there, I learnt a lot that I have taken with me to the stage I am at now.”
Jahanzeb was keen to heap praise on his former sparring partner, describing him as some that ‘lives and breathes boxing’, tipping him to give Josh Warrington problems in a potential rematch and eventually become world champion.
He has since relocated to Manchester, where he trains with Haroon Headley, whose role in his life is far deeper than that of just a boxing coach, Jahanzed commented: “We are all a good team, Haroon Headley trains me and he is a good trainer, not only in boxing but he is a good person. We speak every day and sometimes not even about boxing.
“It’s so important to me that I surround myself with people I can trust, Tunde Ajayi as well, he is a great guy and he only speaks in facts, you can’t argue with facts.
“I don’t have a boxing trainer just to hold pads, I need someone who I can trust fully. With Haroon it’s not only boxing, but he’s also like a father-figure type person.”
In the same way that he takes inspiration from his team, the charismatic fighter is looking to inspire the next generation.
“A kid in the gym is a kid off the streets, they think the streets are the only way and it’s not, there is some real talent in Bradford from all sectors. It’s just the downfall of people going down the route of the streets, I want to show that you don’t have to go down that route.
“I want to show that there is a different path, you can come from absolutely nothing and build yourself into something. These guys see the world in me and I’m just on the second step of the ladder.
“I’m representing Bradford now and I have to carry myself in the right manner and inspire everyone that’s around me. I just want to tell people to be themselves. Bradford is looked down upon, but the good here doesn’t get shown as much as it should, I’m lifting us all up and carrying Bradford on my back.”
His roots and upbringing are clearly something Jahanzeb cherishes, as he proudly stated he is not only looking to represent his city in the best way possible but also become boxing’s new ‘King of the North’.