And Still? Gary Cully set for York Hall defence

Gary Cully [13(7)-0] will make the first defence of his WBO European lightweight ranking title in York Hall as early as February 11.

The Sarto lightweight will take on Artjoms Ramlavs [14(8)-1(0)] on the first MTK show of the new year.

Cully registered two dominant stoppage wins in the first half of 2021 and looked primed for a breakthrough end to the year.

However, injury prevented him from fully capitalizing on the two eye-catching victories and ruined those ‘big fight’ end of the year plans.

Ramlavs, who was at different stages was linked to Carl Frampton and Sean McComb, it’s quite a big fight – but he is deemed WBO European title challenge worthy and comes to the ring with a solid record.

The Latvian has only once in his 15 fights, that defeat coming against potential Anthony Cacace foe Archie Sharp in 2019. The 32-year-old represents a solid return to ring action for the Pate Taylor trained lightweight ahead of a possible progressive run of fights.

Refecting on how his year played out when previously talking to Irish-boxing.co Cully said: “As a whole, it’s been a successful year. Becoming WBO European champion in March then getting another good win in June. I was looking to finish the year with a big fight but I picked up a little injury that kept me out of fighting for a few weeks and forced me out of that fight.

“That was originally a frustrating time but I stayed in the gym and set some goals for the gym while I couldn’t fight. I worked on reaching them. I learned a lot about myself in the couple of weeks I was injured and it’s made me even more hungry to achieve my goals.

“Ideally, I would’ve fought three times this year but it is what it is. I believe these things happen for a reason, so I’m just looking forward to whatever’s next for me, the plan for 2022 is to fight four times and to have some massive fights. I’ve got massive plans for the next 12 months so that’s what I’m looking forward to now.”

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com