Boxing is a young man’s sport. Sure, several older fighters are still going strong, but for the most part, once you start creeping up near the 40 mark, the grim reaper begins to knock on your door.

Erislandy Lara is right in that age range. He’s just a few months away from turning 41 and the rest of the middleweight division’s top guys are considerably younger. Michael Zerafa is one of those younger guys making a name for himself. On March 30th, he’ll do his best to knock Lara off his high horse when they square off.

The Cuban still walks around with a pep in his step. He’s the proud owner of the WBA 160-pound title and is in the midst of a four-fight win streak, three coming via violent stoppage. Still, even with those victories, Lara admits that while he still feels terrific, a few years prior, he might’ve been a different animal.

“I feel strong, I feel great,” Lara told Tha Boxing Voice. “I’m not gonna say I feel quite like I did when I first started but I definitely feel great and strong.”

Even a half-decade ago, Lara often bemused his opponents with nonstop movement and counterpunching. Nowadays, he plants his feet in the dirt and lets his hands go.

At the moment, Lara is not just the oldest champion in the middleweight division but in all of boxing. At some point, he knows he’ll be forced to bow out and wave goodbye to the game. It won’t be a sad day, however. He’s become a multi-divisional champion and has made the sort of money that will ensure a comfortable living for the rest of his days. But wait, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Retirement isn’t in his plans. Not now and not in the immediate future.

“I’m still here. I’m not going anywhere for a while.”