Boxing: `Bigger is better' as Lewis prepares

LENNOX LEWIS expects to have a three-stone advantage by the time he climbs into the ring on 13 March for his world heavyweight title unification fight with Evander Holyfield. "I'm a big man, and I'm staying big," the World Boxing Council champion said from his training headquarters in the Pocono Mountains, Pennsylvania, last night.

The Briton admits to weighing 18st 8lb a week and a half before the bout with the World Boxing Association and International Boxing Federation champion at Madison Square Garden and if he scales 18st 3lb by fight time, he will outweigh Holyfield by three stones.

Lewis' trainer Emanuel Steward conditions his champion for the qualities of his opponent and bulk may well be the order of the night. Lewis has trained hard for this bout, sometimes at altitude in California, but his stamina has been brought into question during the build-up.

"I think Holyfield should look at his stamina. They talk about mine but don't look at his," Lewis countered. "There's been a lot of fights in which he's been puffing in the last round.

"I'm not going in there expecting it to be easy - I'm going to be working hard. It's not going to be a stroll in the park for Holyfield. I have an arsenal of punches to throw at any moment I'm in there."

Holyfield, for his part, does not expect stamina to be an issue. He has already predicted that Lewis will fall in the third round. "I fail to see the realism in that, Holyfield hasn't knocked anybody out in three rounds," Lewis said, perhaps forgetting that when the American first won the heavyweight crown, in 1991, he knocked out "Buster" Douglas in the third.

"It's interesting to see that he's making predictions for the first time in his career. I don't know why he would say that.

"All I can visualise is Lennox Lewis being victorious."