Centre of Attention – Gary Cully finally getting his chance

If the big fight spotlight is water then Gary Cully [15(9)-0] is the happiest duck in the pond.

The Irish lightweight has developed from one of the best-kept secrets in boxing to a fighter everyone is watching out for in his last two fights.

High-profile stoppage wins over Miguel Vazquez and Jaouad Beimehdi on DAZN-broadcast cards have inspired a massive spike in his profile and secured him a long-term Matchroom contract.

He is now being groomed as a future Dublin headliner and, according to Eddie Hearn, is the ‘next big Irish superstar’.

The change in status has brought a change in the level of interest surrounding the Pete Taylor-trained world title hopeful and means there is a lot more spotlight on the 27-year-old, something which has been particularly noticeable ahead of his fight with Wilfredo Flores on the big Wood-Lara card in Nottingham this Saturday.

Cully has received the Matchroom mini-documentary treatment and his media responsibilities have increased significantly ahead of what is just his second fight as a Matchroom fighter.

It’s a development he welcomes not just because it proves he is moving in the right direction but because he quite enjoys the attention and loves the camera.

“I love it all to be honest,” he tells Irish-boxing.com before using an example to prove as much.

“I said to Niall [Barrett, trainer] at the public workout, ‘let’s put on a bit of a show here, there are fans out here, there are media here, let’s put on a show’.”

“Duck to water, I’m born for this kind of stuff. Once I get into that fight week mode I enjoy it all and I take every day as a separate day. So yesterday was the public workout, I performed there and I put that to the back of my mind, today is the press conference I have to perform at the press conference and then we’ll push that to the side until the weigh-in and then obviously on to fight night.”

Cully, who fought for his big-time chance, is also able to enjoy the spotlight as it’s proof he is on course to achieve all he set out to.

“This is somewhere I’ve always been aiming toward and somewhere that I knew my talent deserved. I was waiting for opportunities to show and prove that, so I’ve [taken to the big stage] like a duck to water and I’m settling in nicely. I’m excited for the next 12 to 24 months are going to be huge for me.

“If you are going to be a name, reach the level I want to reach in boxing then that [attention] is all part of the game.”

Cully’s rapid-fire pad approach during the public workout was something different and people commented as much. Although he warns his speed levels will greatly increase by Saturday.

“I haven’t had carbs in me for a week, so watch how fast I’ll be on Saturday after I get carbs in me.”

Photo credit Matchroom and Mark Robinson

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