Kurt Walker insists ‘bring it on’ after booking his place in the last-16 of the men’s featherweight division at the Tokyo Olympics.
Walker enjoyed a winning Olympic debut in the early hours of Saturday morning as he saw off Spain’s Joe Quiles Brotons in the Kokugikan Arena.
The Lisburn fighter had to dig deep over three rounds and also sustained a cut above the right eye in the third round of his contest.
The first round was a cagey affair as Walker fought at distance, but his superior work rate earned the nod from all five judges.
Brotons was on the front foot in the second round, but Walker used his skills and win the final round and ease into the last-16.
He now faces the number one seed Mirazizbek Mirzakhalilov from Uzbekistan on Wednesday morning.
“I thought I dominated the first and third. In the second he gave it his all. But he had nothing left in the third. But he is very good, and I had to dig deep. It was a great first fight for me,” Walker said.
“After the second round my corner was telling me that he had given it his all in the second. They told me to go out and to go back to my boxing. I got a bit nervous. It was a wee bit different (fighting in the Olympics).”
Looking ahead to his next fight, Walker added:”He has two arms and two legs like myself, it doesn’t bother me,” declared Walker.
“If you want to be the best you have to beat the best.
“It’s tough enough but sure it’s the Olympic Games and I’m in good form and I’ve good coaching staff with me.
“We’ll find a game plan and I’ll beat him. I just know he’s been about. Obviously he’s a good boxer.
“I have won a fight in the Olympics more than I thought I would do a year ago so I’m happy and I will keep going.”
He added: “I have started to mature a bit – like tactics, do it and it will work, don’t be going off track sometimes go in for a fight or try and move too much.
“I’ve confidence in my boxing ability as well.
“It helps what I’m fighting for and I know she (his baby daughter Layla) is going to be proud of me when she’s older.
“I have done European gold twice so an Olympic medal would be brilliant.”