Inside Caleb Plant's 10 week camp for Canelo Alvarez fight including training with Andre Ward and sparring Shawn Porter
CALEB PLANT has been training with boxing royalty as he attempts to dethrone super-middleweight king Canelo Alvarez.
The American puts his prized IBF title up against Canelo's WBC, WBA and WBO belts in an undisputed title decider over the weekend.
Plant is faced with overcoming the best boxer on the planet right now, but has left no stoned unturned in his training camp.
And here, SunSport exclusively goes inside his ten week preparations with the help of the unbeaten champion's trainer Justin Gamber.
Plant looked set to fight Canelo in September, but talks broke down and terms were later agreed for November.
It meant he had an extra two weeks in camp, but as Gamber reveals, the pair are never usually out of the gym regardless.
He said: "Eight weeks out from the fight we up the ante, this camp was ten weeks.
"We did two weeks extra, but it doesn't even matter because we're usually in the gym anyway."
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Plant has insisted, despite the facing pound-for-pound No1, nothing has changed in their approach – and Gamber echoes that.
He revealed: "We basically stick to the formula – we added a few unique drills to this camp – but we pretty much always do that.
"We did really treat it like any other camp. But, we're not just fighting any other fighter.
"There's a reason that Canelo is considered the pound for pound best, but we didn't take our approach any differently.
"We have been working on specific technical aspects of course, but at the end of the day, if Caleb Plant is himself and is the best version of himself, that's all we need."
Plant, 29, had fans talking when he uploaded pictures training with Andre Ward, 37, who retired 32-0 in 2016 as a modern great.
The pair spent three days together with Ward's old trainer Virgil Hunter in LA, enough time to soak in the endless amount of knowledge on offer.
Gamber said: "I know Caleb and Andre are friends, and Caleb mentioned that Andre invited him up there and I encouraged him to go.
"Andre's a great boxer, he's smart, Caleb's looked up to Andre for years and I encouraged him to go.
"It was a short thing, maybe three days and it was good for Caleb to get away right before the camp, clear his head and just to be around some good, positive people.
"They had some good ideas and at the end of the day, they're friends with Caleb, they're friends of ours and they just wanted to invite him to come and encourage him."
Plant is based in Las Vegas – a hotspot for quality sparring Stateside.
And he took full advantage by sharing rounds with ex-welterweight champ Shawn Porter, who fights undefeated Terence Crawford on November 20.
Gamber revealed: "Shawn was the biggest name, we did a little bit of work with Carlos Adames and we did work with other guys.
"But Shawn was the biggest name and we're used to sparring Shawn here and there. It's been a little while, but we've sparred him a number of times.
"Just like Andre, we're friends with Shawn and his team and we respect them. He's got a big fight on his hands with Terence Crawford.
"And Terence is a little taller than Shawn and it was good work for Shawn and Caleb sparring each other, it was good work."
The fight explosively started early when the rivals began brawling on stage at their press conference in LA.
It left Plant with a cut, which threatened to affect his sparring, but Gamber reassured there were no such problems.
He admitted: "I actually wondered that myself.
"I wondered if it would put us back a couple of days, I knew it wouldn't put us back much, if any, but I wouldn't even call them cuts.
"They were more like scratches more than anything, but they didn't actually slow us down any, we didn't miss a sparring day.
"He went to the doctors to make sure, but the doctor reassured us everything was fine and it was never an issue."
Having won titles in four divisions in a 59-fight career which started when Canelo was 15, he has almost seen it all in the ring.
So Gamber knows Plant has to be versatile in his approach, and give Alvarez something to think about all night.
He explained: "You can't just be a good boxer with Canelo, you've got to have the heart, the mind, the grit, you've got to have the junkyard dog in you, but you've got to be smart.
"You've got to be able to box different ways. You can't just stick and move, you can't just go forward, you can't just counter punch.
"You can't do anything one way, Caleb's going to have to go after him a little bit, he's going to have to get a little aggressive with him at times.
"He's going to have to mix it up – but Caleb has everything he needs to win this fight, I know it."
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