Opportunity Knocks For Wild Will

By Daniel Attias on March 10, 2015
Opportunity Knocks For Wild Will
Will Tomlinson will face his toughest foe to date against the undefeated Francisco Vargas.

“You put me in with an average fighter I’m going to fight average, you put me in with a great fighter, I’m going to fight great…”

Opportunity is oft described as fleeting. On March 12th, Australian “Wild Will” Tomlinson (23-1-1, 13 KOs) will have the biggest chance of his career to show just what he is made of. Headlining HBO’s Latino Boxing card at the Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio, Texas, Tomlinson will face his toughest foe to date against the undefeated Mexican, Francisco Vargas (21-0-1, 15 KOs).

Being in the right place at the right time has often led to bigger and better fights in the sport of boxing and for Tomlinson this fight against Vargas could very well be his right place and right time moment.

A move to the U.S in 2013 was integral to Tomlinson’s career progression and signing with Golden Boy Promotions has given him the much-needed exposure on the world stage that he couldn’t gain in his home country.

“My promoters, the powerhouse that’s Golden Boy, have been great to work with, especially in the lead up to this fight. Golden Boy and HBO Latino are behind me, really pumping up the fight and this has in turn ended up promoting me; it’s been really good. I feel like they’re really boosting my profile here which is awesome.”

Tomlinson had been a highly touted prospect in Australia since he first turned professional in 2008 and went through the best there was to offer in his home country with relative ease. He won a minor world title, the IBO super featherweight and defended it three times including a victory over former IBF super featherweight world champion Malcolm Klassen but Tomlinson is well aware of the differences between fighting at home as opposed to the U.S.

“Back home in Australia I was the Aussie boy and I’d get looked after, over here I get no special treatment, I’m just another face in the crowd. I have to really grind every day to get the opportunities, there’s that many people over here that you have to do something pretty significant to stand out.”

Standing out is what Tomlinson plans to do in this fight. Despite a loss to Jerry Belmontes one year ago, he isn’t looking at this as a crossroads fight, more of a chance to shine on a fight card that will have a good live TV audience.

“I’m definitely not looking at it as a crossroads or a make or break fight, it’s a massive opportunity and that’s what I’m looking at it as. Everything’s in place for me to go out there and really take a massive leap forward in my career with a good win over Vargas on a massive TV network. There’s going to be a lot of people tuning in all over the world and with the bright lights on me. I plan on putting on a performance and winning myself some fans in the process.”

A fan friendly style has always been something that Tomlinson has brought to the ring and it’s one that has earned him the “Wild Will” moniker. A tendency to cut, along with a willingness to trade has earned him a good following in Australia with his fights generally being must watch affairs, but it’s a new found ability to adapt that gives him confidence going onto this fight.

“My strategy for this fight is to adapt to whatever I have to do to win. I’m not going into this fight saying I have to box and move to win or I have to stand there and trade to win. I’m going in there with an open mind and a fresh mind which will give me the ability to bring whatever style of fight I have to bring to beat him.”

Having teamed up with new trainer Nico Robledo in his last two fights it looked as if things were really starting to come together well for Tomlinson in his last fight, against another tough Mexican in Miguel Zamudio, scoring an eighth round stoppage and displaying some impressive skills along the way. But Tomlinson is well aware that Vargas is a class above Zamudio and he feels as if he will have little trouble rising to the occasion.

“My last fight was a good fight, I fought well but to beat Vargas I’m going to have to fight better. I think I will because Vargas is a better fighter than Zamudia and I feel like the type of person and fighter I am, is that I always rise to the occasion. You put me in with an average fighter I’m going to fight average, you put me in with a great fighter, I’m going to fight great. I believe against Vargas I’ll rise to his level and above and I’ll do what I have to do to beat him.”

HBO Latino has been a solid platform for many a fighter and with a large Mexican fan base it’s a huge opportunity for Tomlinson in front of many knowledgeable and loyal fight fans and should he beat Vargas, he will no doubt be in line for even bigger fights, but his focus right now is solely on beating the Mexican.

“I haven’t thought one second past Vargas.”

Nor should he, in Vargas he faces an undefeated and tough fighter who has beaten the only man to defeat “Wild Will” in Belmontes and recently made easy work of former world champion Juan Manuel Lopez. This shapes up as an exciting must-see fight which both men absolutely have to win to continue chasing their dream of a world title fight.

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  1. nicolas 07:57pm, 03/10/2015

    For me also his problem with Vargas is that he lost badly to Belmontes, and Belmontes lost badly to Vargas, every round. While some of the Mexican fans at the fight are knowledgeable, Tomlinson will probably have to be very superior to win the judges, as the fans will be far and away cheering on Vargas.

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