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Comeback Changed – Luke Keeler reveals title plans

Luke Keeler plans to prolong the big bang he finishes with.

The former world title challenger ends a three-year sabbatical from boxing when he climbs through the ropes at the RDS on September 16th.

The Ballyfermot middle admits he initially planned a fleeting return, just enough fights to end on a good note and make sure his Januaury 2020 middleweight world title defeat to Demetrius Andrade wasn’t his last fight memory.

The original idea was to secure a warm-up win before having a big all-Irish farewell, preferably against Jason Quigley.

However, after a number of weeks back training, Keeler has reviewed and altered the plan.

The 36-year-old now believes he can return an improved fighter and has dreams beyond one big domestic fight. Keeler has rejusted the bar and plans to leave on a higher high.

“I’m getting around to the way of thinking that I can improve and I could come back even better,” he explains when talking to Irish-boxing.com.

“I never would have said that before. I was kinda’ saying ‘one fight at a time’, ‘one Irish fight and go out on a high’ but coming back and seeing the way I am [I think I can do more].

“I’m a lot clearer in my head, I’m seeing things and I think I could improve, even with the three years out as mad as that sounds.”

Things haven’t just become clearer in terms of in the ring – the emergence of McEleney Promotions, who co-promote the September 16th card alongside Conlan Boxing, allows him to come back with a clear vision for the last chapter of his career.

“To be honest, I said big Irish fight and mentioned Jason Quigley, going out on a high, but after training three weeks full time I’m actually allowing myself to think beyond that.”

What is beyond this year and the initial comeback?

“You never know I might get a crack at a world title again,” adds the Pete Taylor-trained fighter before targeting a strap Dennis Hogan, Anthony Cacace and Padraig McCrory have won recently.

“The Irish lads won the IBO world title, Golovkin relinquished that at my weight, so it could happen.

“McEleney Promotions aren’t stopping with just this show with Conlan Boxing. They’re going again, at least two more shows, with a show in Lucan if they can. The way I’m looking and feeling now I’d love to get a fight for the IBO title on that [Lucan] show next summer. That’s my thinking now because I’m performing and where I’m at in the gym.”

Regardless of what the distant future home, the former WBO world title challenger has a September fight and a return to Dublin fast approaching.

“It’s amazing having Dublin shows,” he comments. “I remember a couple of shows in the stadium where Cherry Orchard Boxing Club came down and supported. That’s the kind of buzz I love, family and friends, having that support in Dublin again is going to be great. I was surprised at the level of interest since I’m just coming back from three years out.”

Although the plan has changed, the Dubliner remains open to a ‘best of our era’ fight with Jason Quigley.

“I asked a couple of times and I’m sure he’d take it but I don’t know his position. He did well in his last fight, so he’s still there or there about. Why not if there is a slot on that card at the end of November. It’s one I’d take straight away.”


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years