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Dunedin boxer Alex Hanan fights out of Sydney these days and the fledgling professional is slowly building a solid record across the Tasman. The 20-year-old has a record of 8-0. But his toughest competition has been in sparring. He was called in to help Anthony Mundine prepare for his bout with Australian Jeff Horn on November 30.
Hanan went 20 rounds with the three-time world champion across the course of the training camp. He is scheduled to spar the 43-year-old again this week. It is a brilliant learning experience for the young man.
"He wanted to fight guys that are a bit bigger than him — guys who can stand in front of him and take his shots," Hanan said.
"He still has his speed and he is still really sharp. His fight with Horn is going to be a good one, I reckon."
Hanan was not giving away any secrets when asked whether he gave as good as he got.
But he said the sparring had helped him get into tremendous shape for his fights on November 23 and December 21. Both are in Australia. His next opponent has not been confirmed yet but Hanan was not concerned he was not able to do any scouting.
"Not really. I just know what I can do. I don’t really focus on my opponents anyway."
He is expecting a much tougher fight in December, though.
"That will be a step up because that is a bigger card. MTK Global are backing that and they are a big promotions company.
"It will be good exposure for me as well."
Hanan has also been sparring Queensland middleweight Tysinn Best, so he will not lack for conditioning. Hanan will have had eight fights this year and plans to fight another six times next year. He is hoping some of those will be in New Zealand.
"I want to fight some big names out of New Zealand as well to lift my profile at home. I’m confident now I could beat the best guys in New Zealand from welterweight to middleweight. It is just about choosing those fights at the right time."