‘Million Dollar’ looking to ‘fantastic’ Manchester support to spur him towards World title bid
Anthony Crolla knows his World title dreams will left in tatters if he does not overcome Gamaliel Diaz when they clash for the WBO Inter-Continental Lightweight title at the Phones 4u Arena in Manchester on Saturday September 13.
Crolla is ranked fourth with the WBO and victory over former WBC Super Featherweight champion Diaz will see the ‘Million Dollar’ Manchester man close in on a World title challenge.
The 27 year old is hoping his hometown crowd can help roar him to victory as they have done before, and says he is expecting a tough encounter with Mexican Diaz.
“Early on his career he lost quite a few but since then he has learnt how to fight,” said Crolla. “He is a former World champion and he holds a win over Robert Guerrero.
“This is the most important fight of my career because if all goes wrong for me on September 13 then the big plans I have for World titles back in Manchester won’t happen.
“Every time I fight at this Arena it is special for me. This is the Arena from being a little kid, a schoolboy boxer, watching the likes of Naseem Hamed, Michael Brodie, Ricky Hatton that I have wanted to fight in. So every time I am back here it means the world to me.
“Last time out was a fantastic night for me and the city of Manchester, and the support myself and John Murray received was great.”
Crolla’s clash with Diaz forms chief support to Scott Quigg’s WBA World Super Bantamweight title defense against Stephane Jamoye on what promises to be an exciting night of boxing at the Phones 4u Arena.
Unbeaten Lightweight faces Kirk Goodings for English belt in Manchester
Scotty Cardle is expecting a tough bout when he challenges Kirk Goodings for the Sunderland fighter’s English title, but says he’ll relish the opportunity to earn a shot at the coveted British title.
The Lytham St Annes man is unbeaten in 15 pro fights and steps up to fight Goodings for the English strap in a battle that doubles up as an eliminator for the Lonsdale belt.
Manchester’s Terry Flanagan currently holds that belt after beating Martin Gethin in July and Cardle is targeting a pre-Christmas assault on the British title, should he defeat Goodings.
“I am going in at the deep end and it is a great challenge,” said Cardle. “I am looking forward to fighting Goodings. It is for the English title which is a good strap to have and a good belt for my waist. But as a British title eliminator that is what I am really happy with.
“It is a step up and that is what I want. I watched Kirk in Sunderland once and became quite a fan of his boxing – I thought he was great – so I am looking forward to fighting him.
“I have sparred Flanagan before and if all goes according to plan in Manchester then I will get the British title fight before Christmas; I would love that.”