Anto Cacace believes he can become ITV star


A link-up with ITV can deliver Anthony Cacace the big fights he craves, claims the Belfast fighter.

The super featherweight ended a 14 month ring absence with victory over Argentinian Alan Castillo at the O2 Arena, on the undercard of Chris Eubank Jnr’s victory over James DeGale on Saturday night. 

Although the clash played out live on ITV4 and, although ‘The Apache’ believes he wasn’t at his best, which is understandable considering the lay off, it seems the powers that be from the network liked what they saw.

Cacace [16(7)-1(0)] reveals ITV are keen to have him back and, as they bid to make a real dent in the British boxing market, they may do all they can to help secure him the big title fights he wants.

“The good thing for me was that we met with the ITV guys and they have said they are keen to have me on their shows and that platform is crucial. It means that opportunities will come for me,” Cacace said, with talk of an April fight date and even whispers of a Belfast ITV show circulating.

Having had a stop-start career since turning over as far back as 2012, the 30-year-old, who is viewed by some as the most naturally gifted of his generation, is now keen to get busy.

Three fights since 2016 hasn’t allowed him to progress in the manner which he wanted – although it has to be pointed out one of those bouts was a defeat in a kick start British title fight against Martin J Ward – and he wants that to change.

“I’m going to take a couple of days off and get back to the gym on Wednesday. I need to stay active and I know Pat [Magee, manager] is going to be working hard to make sure that’s the case.”

Cacace did show flashes of his quality against the Argentine, who was deemed a tough comeback opponent, but he wasn’t overly impressed with his display.

A rankings title fight had been the plan but the bout was downgraded to an eight-rounder which is also a disappointment.

Yet, the win was achieved and the fighter is now looking forward to a career re-boot.

“The preparation for this fight wasn’t great. I only had 40 rounds of sparring and had about four different opponents until Castillo was confirmed and having been out for 14 months, to be honest, I just didn’t feel great in the ring.”

“I felt my timing was a bit off and the sharpness wasn’t there. If it had been I could have got the guy out of there.”

“But the main thing is I have got the win, I’ve got my career going again and I know that if I stay active I can achieve big things. It has been tough the last 14 months but that’s behind me now and I want to just focus on the future.”

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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