Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 28 August 2014

McCloskey title aims hang in the balance

Paul McCloskey’s future title aspirations are on the line on Saturday night as he returns to the ring on the back of a shock defeat in May.

The former European light-welterweight champion didn’t look himself when he was stopped by American Demarcus Corley at the King’s Hall but he aims to put that behind him with a win over North American champion Manuel Perez on the supporting bill to Frampton-Molitor.

“I didn’t perform to my best that night (against Corley) but I still feel that the fight was stopped very quickly,” said McCloskey.

“I didn’t even get the chance to fight my way out of trouble, so I still have some question marks over the way that fight ended.

“But it has happened now and you have to deal with it and the best way for me to deal with it is for me to get back into the ring and win.

“I have been training well and I am in good shape. I have been sparring with some tough contenders, who are quick and good workers and are similar to Perez’s style.

“The way I am working at the moment I am feeling very good about the fight, I am feeling very confident. I am looking forward to getting back into the ring and getting back to winning ways.

“This is an international contest so a win would put me back in the top 10 rankings.

“I would be looking for a European or world title fight, so I want to win this fight to get back into the top 10 rankings and push on and try and get back to a world title fight as quick as possible.”

Perez comes with a record of 18 wins, seven defeats and one draw having lost three out of his last four fights but he looks an ideal opponent for 33-year-old former world title challenger McCloskey as he seeks to re-ignite his career.

Fellow Dungiven man Eamonn O’Kane is also on the show as he looks to progress up the British middleweight rankings.

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