Nyika commits to Olympic heavyweight bid

David Nyika has put his professional boxing aspirations on ice until 2020, declaring he wants to fight at the Tokyo Olympics.

The 22-year-old Kiwi heavyweight's career was at the crossroads after a controversial loss to Olympic gold medallist Evgeny Tishchenko at the world amateur championships in August.

Nyika, who split with his coach Rik Ellis before the competition, was disillusioned with the result, taking a swipe at the judges and publicly questioning whether to continue in the sport.

However the Glasgow Commonwealth Games' gold medallist is now in a better head space and is keen to chase his dream.

"As long as I'm being backed by High Performance (Sport) New Zealand I will continue on the path towards the Olympics" Nyika told NZ Newswire.

"What better time to turn professional and I will be fully fledged by then and ready to take on the world."

Nyika will turn 25 during the Games in Japan.

Until then, the Hamilton-based fighter is focused on making history as he attempts to break Bill Kini's 50 year-old record as New Zealand's most successful Commonwealth Games boxer.

The Southland heavyweight won gold in Kingston, Jamaica in 1996 to follow a silver in Perth four years earlier.

Nyika is relaxed putting pressure on himself to make it twin golds on the Gold Coast in April.

"I know what's expected of me and it doesn't change the way I'm going to box. I'm pretty calm about the whole situation and all I can do is perform my best.

"I never knew about Bill's record so that's going to add pressure but I would expect myself to do it."

Nyika has his final tune up fight against Australia's second-ranked heavyweight, Brendan Rees, in Auckland on Saturday, before heading to Colorado to train with the New Zealand team.

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