Point for Benn to prove

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The Independent Online
Boxing

Nearly four years on from his first encounter with Sugar Boy Malinga, Nigel Benn is confident he can achieve a more emphatic victory than last time.

Benn insisted yesterday that he had only 19 days to prepare for his first fight with Malinga but this time he believes his six-week altitude training programme in Tenerife has put him in perfect shape for the 10th defence of his World Council title at the Newcastle Arena on Saturday .

Malinga and his manager, Nick Durandt, still feel aggrieved that Benn received the verdict of the referee Paul Thomas in their previous meeting.

Benn does not intend to let Malinga ruin his plans for the remainder of his career with the bigger and more profitable prospects of the World Organisation champion, Steve Collins, and the International Federation's Roy Jones on his horizons.

"This time I've got something to prove as he thought he won it last time," Benn said. "I thought I nicked the first six rounds, and it was close from there."

Malinga, 36, who has fought five world champions, said: "I thought I won it, I don't remember Nigel winning those six rounds. Deep down he knows he didn't win. It's going to be a different story on Saturday."

The South African also lost a World Organisation title clash against Chris Eubank three months before the first fight and said: "I got a rough deal in both fights."

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