Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Enzo Maccarinelli on the Comeback Trail

Enzo Maccarinelli and Denis Lebedev will clash in a mouth-watering crossroads fight for the Vacant WBO Intercontinental Cruiserweight title on June 27 at the O2 Arena. Both boxers are hoping that victory will lead to a world title opportunity - while neither man wants to contemplate the consequences of defeat. The fight will be part of a huge undercard to Amir Khan's WBA World Light-Welterweight title challenge against Andreas Kotelnik. Maccarinelli, who has split with former trainer Enzo Calzaghe and is now working with Karl Ince in the north west, is gunning to get his career back on track following a shock loss to Ola Afolabi in his last fight. Macca was knocked out in the ninth round in an interim WBO title fight, but has vowed to come back stronger. "I was gutted when I lost, but anyone who has followed my career knows that wasn't the real me in there," said the 28-year-old Welshman. "I've been a world champion once before and I want to become a world champion again. "This is a great chance for me to prove myself against an undefeated fighter, and I can't wait for June 27. "Working with Karl Ince has been fantastic and I've got my hunger back. Things weren't going well in the gym before the Afolabi fight, but this time around there will be no mistakes. "I'm going to knock out Lebedev and then I'm going after Afolabi for a rematch." But Moscow-based Lebedev, who like Maccarinelli is promoted by Frank Warren, was equally as confident. "I've seen Maccarinelli's fights and he is a good boxer," said the 29-year-old, who was won all 17 of his professional fights, 12 by stoppage. "I know that he wasn't himself against Afolabi, and I have to prepare for a world class opponent. "But I am so confident of winning this fight. "Last time out I boxed a very dangerous puncher in Eliseo Castillo and I stopped him in five rounds, and I believe that I will do the same against Maccarinelli. "Ever since I was a little boy I have wanted to be a world champion, and I am just a couple of fights away from fulfiling my dream." Warren added: "This is a real crossroads fight for both men, and I know they are going to come out and give it there all because there is so much on the line. "I'm confident that whoever wins will find themselves fighting for a world title before too long."

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