Matias: I’m an animal and Paro is my prey

June 12 2024

IBF King ready to pounce on Aussie in homecoming defense on Saturday

Subriel Matias says training camp turns him into an animal – and Liam Paro is his prey as the pair meet for Matias’ IBF World Junior-Welterweight title at Coliseo Juan Aubin Cruz Abreu in Manati, Puerto Rico on Saturday night, live worldwide on DAZN.

Matias (20-1 20 KOs) makes the second defense of his title in his first fight on home turf since November 2019, and the 32 year old is itching to get his hands on Paro and put on a show for his adoring fans.

Paro (24-0 15 KOs) fights for his first World title on Saturday night and does so in the toughest of circumstances – on the doorstep of one of the most avoided fighters on the planet. For Matias, Saturday night is his time to be let off the leash, not just after a long training camp, but also for the first time in a ring in Puerto Rico for 1660 days – and he believes a savage performance is incoming to prove that he’s the top dog at 140lbs.

“During camp I feel like an animal trapped in a cage,” said Matias. “The confinement, the day-to-day nuisances, being away from my family. This creates a monster that grows inside me during camp. I leave camp as an animal, in search of my prey, and this time, that’s Liam Paro.

“There is no-one in the 140lb division that can beat me. It might should arrogant, but I’ll show you. I trust myself and what I do, and that’s makes me dangerous. My mind is my weapon.

“As far as I know, he’s been knocked down a couple of times. I don’t want to knock him down; I want him to suffer and leave a strong message to the division. I know Liam is strong, he’s brave, he has good technique. But he also has a big mouth.

“I’m preparing myself to take damage, and to inflict damage. They want to take away the beans from my family, and we can’t allow that. We’ve put in a lot of effort to be here, and I cannot lose everything in one day. That’s why I have to make these sacrifices.

“I’m the best in the division at 140lbs. There is no second, third or fourth. I’m everything. I’m one, two three and four. I’m scared, but it’s a fear that I enjoy. I just hope that nerves don’t betray me so I can do what I’ve been doing all these years, satisfy my crowd.

“I’ve been dreaming of this moment since I was a kid. I’ve always said that I see myself unified in the division. Many say I am crazy, but I like it, one day they will open their eyes and i will be unified champion. They will have to give it to me.”

Matias’ clash with Paro tops a stacked night of action in Puerto Rico, where Angel Fierro faces Alfredo Santiago for the WBO NABO Jr. Welterweight title and Yankiel Rivera meets Victor Sandoval for the WBC and WBA Continental Americas and WBO Intercontinental Flyweight titles – and new Puerto Rico signings Stephanie Piñeiro and William Ortiz continue their pro journeys.