Red hot heavyweight prospect, Hemi “the Heat” Ahio faces a live under dog in Saturday night’s Fight Against Obesity, despite most NZ heavyweight’s running for cover to avoid the undefeated fighter.
After numerous pull outs in recent months, dangerous veteran, Junior Iakopo has signed to fight the 24 year old, at West Auckland’s Trust’s Arena.
Iakopo has fought the biggest punchers in Australasia and holds notable upset wins over, former NZNBF Champion and Joseph Parker opponent, Afa Tatupu, OPBF Heavyweight Champion, Nathan Briggs and Hasim Rahman conqueror, Antz Nansen.
Trainer Lollo Heimuli is wary of the South Auckland slugger.
“He’s the kind of guy you can’t allow in the fight at any stage, he’s very tough, comes to fight, and if he gets a sniff, will be all over you.
“We must jump on him early or it will be a tough night at the office forHemi.”
Matchmaker, Mark Keddell is pleased Iakopo has taken up the gauntlet after a succession of pull outs have hampered Ahio’s progress through the heavyweight ranks.
“We want to do thing properly, fighting regularly to clean out our back yard before making grand claims and heading off shore.
“But when we confirm fights, opponents suffer all sorts of awful luck as the bout gets closer and pull out, citing injuries, personal and work issues.
“The truth is these guy are running scared, they don’t want to risk a loss against a kid who’s only been boxing for two years.”
Ahio has been touted by several astute boxing minds as having as much potential as David Tua, and promoter Monty Betham is rapt to have him on his card to raise money in the fight against obesity.
“Hemi exemplifies the kind of role model our kids need, he’s embraced his training, lives clean and in less than two years has shown what you can achieve.
“He’s someone they can aspire to with his work ethic and discipline, and let’s face it, in the future we’ll be paying big money in packed stadiums to see this guy live, its great to be playing a part at the start of his journey and doing it for Charity.