Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Big Fights Beckon for Cleverly and Mitchell

Nathan Cleverly and Kevin Mitchell have promised even bigger wins following their impressive championship victories at the weekend. Mitchell will probably take on Michael Katsidis in the summer for the WBO World Lightweight title, with his promoter Frank Warren poised to open negotiations with Katsidis' handlers Golden Boy Promotions. The Dagenham Destroyer, who easily crushed Ignacio Mendoza at the weekend, says his preference would be for a showdown with the Australian at Upton Park football ground, home of his beloved West Ham. But he also said he would be prepared to travel to the States to tackle Katsidis if that was what it took to get the fight on. "I'm ready to make the step up," said Mitchell. "Everything has come together nicely in my last few fights. It's taken me a couple of fights to grow into the lightweight division but I've carried my power up and all I want now is to fight for the world title." Cleverly captured the European light-heavyweight title against Antonio Brancalion at Wembley Arena, and he too has designs on a world title. The young Welshman takes his university finals in May, and may not fight before them, but if he doesn't he will make a defence of his European belt in June or July. "Boxing is just a hobby at the moment, I'm doing it part time because of my studies," said Cleverly. "When I graduate I will dedicate 100% of my time to it and you will see another 25% improvement from me. "It's been a whirlwind 18 months since I won the Commonwealth title. I'll reflect on what I've done and then I'll look to move on to bigger and better things. A couple of defences of my European belt would be good, but I don't want to stop there." Warren added: "I've been banging on about Mitchell and Cleverly for the last few months, and they showed what talent they have got on Saturday night. "I want to keep them busy and in big fights, and hopefully we can make an announcement very soon about where they are going to go next." Meanwhile Warren's two Olympians, Frankie Gavin and James DeGale, could find themselves fighting for titles sooner rather than later having scored impressive victories over Peter McDonagh and Matt Barr on Saturday.

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