FORMER kickboxer Mark ‘The Marksman’ Sondo will fly to Sydney, Australia, to prepare for his professional boxing debut.
The powerfully-built Southern Highlander is scheduled to fight on April 20 in Liverpool on promoter Steve Jess’ card against an as yet unnamed opponent.
The bout at middleweight (70kg) is Sondo’s chance to make a fresh start.
He turned professional in February after being part of the Stanley Nandex kickboxing stable since 2005.
The scheduled six round bout does not faze the 27-year-old who has been training for three months.
“I’ve been training since January doing up to 10 rounds of sparring and pad and road work so I think I’ll be up for it,” Sondo said.
“Obviously, I’m aiming to win but my manager says I could have three or four more fights if I do well in this one.”
Sondo, known for his hard punching style, will be tested on foreign territory but sees it as a challenge.
“I don’t have experience as a boxer but I think as a kickboxer the hard training and the punches are basically the same.
“It’s not a new thing for me,” he added.
While in Sydney, Sondo will train at the gym of world class middleweight and former rugby league star Anthony Mundine in Redfern.
He will be under the guidance of fellow Papua New Guinean professional boxer Kartu “Wantok Warrior” Arang and experienced trainer Alex Tui.
“I am privileged to be able to train at Mundine’s gym with Kartu and Alex and I am sure that will add more to my boxing knowledge and skill.”
Sondo’s fight plan is simple but he will not be taking anything for granted.
“I am going to employ a two-fisted attack. If I hurt him early I am going to go for the KO (knock out),” Sondo said.
However, Sondo, who is prone to walking in and brawling, is keeping his wits about him.
“It all depends; I’ll study him first and see what he’s got. I’m not going to just rush in.
“I just need to get him into a corner and I can go to work.”
Sondo acknowledged support from Mineral Resources Development Company (MRDC) and his family and friends.
He has promised to score a win.