'Fight me if you dare' - Preston's Commonwealth Games boxing champion Lisa Whiteside calls out long-time GB rival Nicola Adams after turning professional
It's the one that all fight fans in this country are eager to seeÂ Â '“ and Lisa Whiteside is hopeful 2019 will be the year when she finally '˜gets it on' with long-time domestic rival Nicola Adams.
The 33-year-old Preston boxing ace this week confirmed that she is to turn over after a decade of competing for Great Britain as an amateur.
The 2018 Commonwealth Games flyweight champion does not intend to hang about either in the paid ranks.
By the end of this year, Whiteside hopes to be world champion – and to have knocked out double Olympic champion Nicola Adams along the way.
With the profile of women’s boxing rocketing in recent years thanks to the exploits of fighters like Katie Taylor, Natasha Jonas and Adams, Whiteside is eager to have her slice of the pie.
She believes a match-up between herself and Adams will be one of the biggest fights the female side of the sport has ever seen.
The pair were team-mates for GB for many years and unfortunately for Whiteside, it was always her who missed out on selection for the biggest events as an amateur.
With both competing at the same weight category, only one of them could go to the Olympics to represent GB and it was the slightly more experienced Adams who always got the nod.
The Leeds Lioness lived up to her billing by winning gold at London in 2012 and then in Rio four years later.
As well as her Olympic success, Adams also claimed world, European and Commonwealth titles to become the most decorated women’s boxer in history.
Whiteside finally got the chance to step out of her great rival’s shadow last year following Adams’ decision to turn professional.
Handed selection for the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, in Australia, the Chorley-born ace claimed gold by beating Northern Ireland’s Carly McNaul in the final.
Whiteside and Adams were primed to fight each other at the National finals a couple of years ago until the latter pulled out due to personal reasons.
After five professional wins, Adams is on the cusp of a world title shot and Whiteside is certain that a contest between the pair cannot be avoided.
“Obviously the one fight everybody wants and I want is the Nicola Adams fight,” said Whiteside, who has been signed by S-Jam Boxing and will be promoted by Sam Jones and Adam Morallee.
“I am hoping that she is willing to have that fight against me.
“It’s a fight that should have happened a couple of years in the amateurs and didn’t happen due to personal circumstances for her.
“I have never swayed away from it. I’ve always wanted the fight.
“I think it’s more that the public want that fight – they want to see it.
“It will be good for women’s boxing. It will be one of those big fights that’s out there which people will want.
“I believe it would be absolutely fantastic if it was to happen – it’s just if she dares to risk everything.”
Whiteside has utmost respect for Adams for what she has been able to accomplish during her career.
But she believes her style in the ring will cause the 36-year-old problems.
“We are completely different,” Whiteside said.
“I have the utmost respect for her; she’s a double Olympic champion.
“She’s very technically sound.
“I think the advantage for me is I have the strength, the power and the fitness, although technically I think I am good too.
“I feel like I will have a lot more to give and probably be her worst kind of opponent because I won’t give her time to breathe.”