Wednesday, July 08, 2009

DeGale packs a punch for England Cricketers

James DeGale is backing England's cricketers to win back the Ashes - after sparring with the squad a fortnight ago. "Chunky" reckons that Andrew Flintoff, Kevin Pietersen and the rest of the team will hit the Aussies for six when cricket's oldest contest begins in Cardiff on Wednesday. "Having sparred with the boys a few weeks ago, I know how fired up they are," said DeGale, who faces a test of his own when he takes on former Irish champion Ciaran Healy in Manchester on July 18. "If they go after the Australians like they came after me, then there's no doubt they will win the series 5-0! "I'll be keeping a close eye on the Ashes all through the summer, and I'll take an hour off from training on Wednesday morning to watch the opening exchanges. "I won't be able to see much of the first two tests because I'll be preparing for the Healy fight, but I'm planning on getting to Lords for the Sunday of the second match - it will be a nice way to celebrate win number three." DeGale, who fights as part of the undercard to Amir Khan's WBA light-welterweight title challenge against Andreas Kotelnik at the MEN Arena, is keen for title fights having seen the way the sporting public crave success. "I still remember the buzz around the country when England won the Ashes in 2005," said the 23-year-old, who is undefeated in his first two professional fights. "The reaction last year when I won the Olympics was not quite as big, but it made me proud to know that the country had been behind me."Having tasted that success it's made me want more of it, and my sights are now set on becoming a world champion." Betfred, the official betting parter of the show, has Khan is the favourite at 8/15 in the main event, Kotelnik at 6/4 and the draw is 25/1. For further information log on to Tickets priced at £40, £50, £75, £100, £150, £200, £300 & £500 are available from: M.E.N Arena Box Office: 0844 847 8000 or online at See Tickets: 0871 220 0260 or online at
Khan Boxing: 01204 535 332 or online at


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