Eggington: Malignaggi is my gateway to huge fights
Sam Eggington believes that beating Paulie Malignaggi is his ticket to the big time when they clash at The O2 in London on March 4, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Eggington put his WBC International Welterweight title on the line against Malignaggi in his biggest test to date, a first defence of the title he landed when he came through another major step-up in September when he stopped local rival Frankie Gavin in eight thrilling rounds in Birmingham.
That win continued Eggington’s impressive rise in the sport as he crashed into the top 15 of the WBC rankings with the win and is the mandatory challenger for the European title that was picked up by Spaniard Ceferino Rodriguez in December.
‘Magic Man’ Malignaggi is looking to halt Eggington’s rise and is no stranger to success in the Greenwich venue having landed the EU title in December 2015, but Eggington is determined to add the Brooklyn stars name to his CV and says doing so would make people stand up and take notice of his growing presence in the 147lbs division.
“I’ve taken every chance that’s been put in front of me with both hands and this is no different,” said Eggington. “Paulie brings so much to the table – he’s got pedigree, he brings a US TV audience and that means that my profile can go through the roof with a win.
“I want to make as much money for my family from the sport as possible, nothing has changed from that being the aim when I was just looking to be a journeyman. But I do have my goals in the sport, I’m mandatory for the European title and if I can win that, the sky is the limit, everyone knows I’ll take any fight with both hands and as European champion, those fights would be big, big fights.
“Success breeds success in big cities, we’re all doing well. The Yafai brothers in general are doing massive things and I’m putting in as much work as possible in to succeed. I’d love to follow Kal’s example and bring big shows to the city. I’m learning all the time and as long as I keep winning I believe I am capable of doing that.”
Eggington’s clash with Malignaggi is part of packed bill at The O2 topped by the blockbuster Heavyweight grudge match between David Haye and Tony Bellew. There’s another spite-filled London vs. Liverpool battle on the slate as Hackney’s Ohara Davies defends his WBC Silver Lightweight title against Merseyside favourite Derry Mathews, while Irish amateur star Katie Taylor boxes for the third time in the pros.
Tickets for Haye vs. Bellew sold out in record-breaking time when they went on sale in December.
BELFAST WATERFRONT CARD POSTPONED TIL MARCH 10
A head cold has forced Jamie Conlan to postpone his upcoming fight against Yader Cardoza at the Belfast Waterfront on Saturday 18th February.
Conlan was due to take on Cardoza for the Vacant WBC International Silver Super-Flyweight title but will now face the Nicaraguan on the rescheduled date of Friday 10th March, at the same venue.
“It’s incredibly frustrating as I’ve been working hard and preparing for this fight for the past two months,” said a disappointed Conlan. “I’m gutted that the show has been postponed but this is boxing and these things happen unfortunately.
“I contracted a head cold on my return to Belfast and as a result I’ve missed some vital training sessions. Yader is a former World Title challenger and I can’t take any chances; I want to put in a real performance for all of my fans.
“This is dangerous sport and I can’t afford to come in at anything less than 100%. It is just one of those things but I’ll be fully fit and prepared to put on a show on March 10th. This is a brilliant card to be topping and I hope you can all come along to the rearranged date and watch me win another title.”
Irish fight fans will still be treated to an unmissable evening of boxing just three weeks later, with all bouts on the card remaining the same.
Tickets purchased for the Saturday 18th February show will still be valid for the rescheduled Friday 10th March date.
THE WBO INTER-CONTINENTAL SUPER-LIGHTWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP JACK CATTERALL VS. MARTIN GETHIN
Chorley’s Jack Catterall will defend his WBO Inter-Continental Super-Lightweight title against Walsall’s Martin Gethin at the Manchester Arena on Saturday 8th April.
Heavy handed Catterall’s all-action and hard-hitting style has taken him to an unbeaten 17 fight record with 9 coming by knockout and has claimed the Central Area, WBO European and Inter-Continental belts on the way.
He earned a comfortable unanimous decision against tough Argentinian Diego Gonzalo Luque last time out in December despite injuring both hands in the opening round but is determined to with in style against the current IBF International Super-Lightweight Champion.
‘The Quiet Man’, a former Midlands, English and British Lightweight Champion, upset the odds against John Wayne Hibbert last November. After being called up at less than a week’s notice, Gehtin spectacularly stopped Hibbert in the fourth round and will be heading into his clash with Catterall full of confidence.
“Martin had a good win last time out which will have given him a lot of momentum heading into our fight,” said Catterall. “He’s been a good domestic fighter over the years and has some decent wins to his name. I know he’ll be up for this fight and I’ve got the bit between my teeth; I’m well up for it!
“I never overlook any opponents and I’m going to train the hardest and the smartest that I can so that on April 8th he’ll just be another notch on my belt.
“Watching Martin and how he’s been fighting of late I can see that he’s a come forward fighter who likes to try and break his opponents down with relentless pressure. His style is perfect for me, I’ll be able to find chinks in his armour and if he keeps coming at me it’s only going to get more painful for him.
Catterall’s showdown with Gethin lands on the undercard of undefeated Terry Flanagan’s fifth defence of his WBO World Lightweight title against dangerous Russian Petr Petrov; fierce Super-Welterweight rivals Liam Smith and Liam Williams clash in one of the most eagerly-anticipated all-British showdowns in recent times; South African Zolani Tete faces Arthur Villanueva in a Final Eliminator for the WBO World Bantamweight title; double Olympic Gold Medallist and women’s boxing icon Nicola Adams OBE fights for the first time as a professional and former Team GB Heavyweight monster Daniel Dubois makes his highly-anticipated professional debut, with more exciting fights to be announced shortly.
Flynn fightS for first title in Glasgow
Charlie Flynn will fight for his first pro title when he meets Ryan Collins for the Celtic Lightweight title at the SSE Arena in Glasgow on April 15, live on Sky Sports.
Flynn has raced to 8-0 in the paid ranks since turning over in December 2014 and ‘Mailman’ will look to deliver his first pro belt at the same venue he won Commonwealth Games gold in August 2014.
The 23 year old Newarthill talent tackles his first ten round action into the bargain when he faces Irvine’s Collins – also 23 – who fought for his first belt in June where he landed the vacant Scottish Area title in Glasgow.
Ricky Burns tops the bill in Glasgow in his World Super-Lightweight unification clash with Julius Indongo, and Flynn’s is the second title bout to be added in as many days following Charlie Edwards’ meeting with Iain Butcher for the vacant British Super-Flyweight title, while Team GB Olympian Josh Kelly makes his pro debut.
Tickets for April 15 are on general sale priced £40, £60 and £100 from www.thessehydro.com and £200 VIP exclusively at www.matchroomboxing.com.