Lee Selby wants British belt for keeps
12:46pm Tuesday 1st October 2013 in Sport
ST JOSEPH’S star Lee Selby is aiming to win his British featherweight belt outright when he defends the title against Ryan Walsh this weekend.
The 26-year-old British and Commonwealth champ then hopes to move on and challenge for European and world titles.
Selby, who also won the WBC International belt after beating Romanian Viorel Simion last time out, takes on the unbeaten Walsh at the O2 arena on Saturday.
And he may be itching to move on to bigger and better things but he says that it has been his ambition to win the British title outright since he started boxing.
“It’s a big achievement as not a lot of people do it in British boxing,” he said.
“I can’t remember the last Welsh boxer to do it either.”
He recently saw St Joes stablemate Gary Buckland come unstuck against Stephen Smith as he attempted to retain his own Lonsdale bet and Selby is in no mood to relinquish his title to Walsh.
“I’m going to outbox him for the first few rounds and, if I can, knock him out,” he said.
“He’s a power puncher and a similar fighter to my last few opponents.”
He added that challenging for a European belt was a “natural progression” after winning the Lonsdale belt outright.
“There isn’t much point continuing to fight for it when you can move on to the European stage,” he said.
“I am the mandatory challenger for the European belt so I want to win that next.”
Selby is ranked seventh with the WBC and he admits that he is already planning his bid for a world title challenge.
“With Matchroom Sport promoting me I think Eddie Hearn would be able to get me a world title shot pretty soon,” he said.
“But I don’t want to just fight for a world title and put on a good performance; I want to be able to win the belt and defend it for a long time.
“I would say after this weekend’s fight I would want another good three fights against good opposition, and then I think I will be ready for the world title.
“I would fight any of the world champions. I think the easiest at the minute would be the IBF champion, Evgeny Gradovich.
“When I say the easiest, he is a world champion so he is a very good fighter but he would suit my style the best but I would be happy to fight any of the world champions.”
Tickets for Selby’s fight are on sale now priced £40, £60 and £100 are available on 08448 24 48 24 and The O2’s ticketing agent – www.AXS.com.
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