DEGALE: I’LL FIGHT ANYONE AT 168

Newly crowned World champion on cloud nine after historic night in Boston

James DeGale MBE created British boxing history last night when he claimed the vacant IBF World Super Middleweight title in Boston against Andre Dirrell – and told his rivals at 168lbs: “I will fight anyone”.

DeGale became the first British Olympic Gold medal winner to land a World title with a superb performance at the Agganis Arena, in a fight that started in explosive fashion for the Londoner.

‘Chunky’ began well in the opening round but then appeared to be hampered by a cut on the right eyebrow early in the second session. Dabbing away at the blood, DeGale touched Dirrell to the body and then unleashed a thunderous left that sent the American to the canvas. Dirrell bounced straight back up but was on unsteady legs and another flurry of punches saw him crumbled to the deck again – and the Michigan man was fortunate that it was late in the round so he could get back to his corner and regroup.

DeGale rocked Dirrell again late in the third round as he dominated the first half of the fight, but to Dirrell’s credit, he not only regained his composure but began to close the gap on the Brit in the mid-to-late rounds.

The visitor sensed he needed to claim the last two rounds to create history though and finished strong – and was rewarded for his part in an enthralling contest with a unanimous decision and his father Leroy placed the World title belt he had craved around his waist to the delight of the travelling fans.

“I am speechless,” said DeGale. “In my whole career, what I have been building up to is winning a World title and I have finally done it. It is an unbelievable feeling. I have made history, I am the first British Olympic Gold medallist to become a World champion.

“I am back now and injury free. I will take on any Super Middleweight in the world. There is no other Super Middleweight in the world who will beat me. I am hard to beat when I am at my best. Let’s not forget he is a very good opponent, very, very talented and hard to beat. Andre Ward is top of the rankings and then there is me.

“I am super fit, feeling good and I am ready. I am IBF World champion and I intend to keep this belt for a long time, and add more titles by beating more great fighters.

“I was surprised he managed to get up from that shot so credit to him for that. I didn’t want to just steam in and try and blast him away. I stayed composed and assured and although he got back into the fight I always felt in control, my fitness was great and I had more gears to go through.”

pics courtesy of Mark Robinson

@britishboxers

RICHIE WENTON INTERVIEW ON HIS CAREER

MARK BATESON ON THE IMPACT TO SMALL HALL BOXING

HOW TYSON FURY WENT FROM BULLIED WEAKLING TO SAVAGE PITBULL!

PETER FURY OPEN, HONEST AND IN-DEPTH ON BOXING AND LIFE

TOMMY DIX – MY P4P TOP 10 OF ALL TIME

ZELFA BARRETT – THE ROAD TO THE TITLE

JOSH WARRINGTON DROPS TICKETS OFF FOR FANS AND PULLS A PINT IN THE PUB

EXCLUSIVE: JOE CALZAGHE – BBTV SPECIAL

MIND YOUR MANNERZ! NICK MANNERS

PHIL MARTIN TRIBUTE, 25 YEARS SINCE THE PASSING OF THE LEGENDARY CHAMPS CAMP COACH

JANE COUCH MBE ON HER NEW BOOK AND FIGHTING TO BECOME THE UK’S FIRST FEMALE PRO-BOXER

THE SHAMROCK EXPRESS: FORMER WORLD CHAMP SHEA NEARY LOOKS BACK OVER HIS CAREER

PAT BARRETT SENDS A STERN MESSAGE DOWN SOUTH

No more articles
error

Thanks for visiting us? Please spread the word :)