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Connor Coyle determined to level up in Orlando tonight

Connor Coyle [15(7)-0] plans to take a hugely positive step toward the top of the middleweight mountain tonight.

The Derry favourite fights for the vacant WBA-NABA 160lbs title in Orlando, a strap the likes of Andy Lee and Spike O’Sullivan won to progress their careers.

There is a long way to go and victory wouldn’t even leave Coyle at middleweight mountain base camp but it would open serious doors and would put the 31-year-old on the trail to the top. The strap comes with a massive ranking boost and should naturally propel the eager to level up Commonwealth Games medal winner into bigger and more progressive fights.

“Winning this WBA-NABA ranking belt would get me into the top 10 in the world so I will be catapulted up into the bigger league. The next title after that will be a world title!” Coyle enthused before stressing victory would see him wave goodbye to the small hall.

“There will be no more of those small fights in Boston. That was the last of those in February. It’s all big fights from here on out, fingers crossed. My hands are okay and everything is going well so hopefully, we can get a good run at it over the next few years.

“This is my world title fight. I need to win in order to go further in my career. It’s my first big step up and I need to prove I belong at the top.”

Coyle fights Antonio Todd [13(7)-5(2)] for the progressive title at the Caribe Royale in Orlando tonight.

The American’s record makes for somewhat deceptive reading and he should prove a test. During the last year and a half, he’s amassed an impressive 6-1-1 record and comes into this clash on the back of his biggest win to date, a ten round majority decision over contender Hugo Centeno Jr in January.

It represents the kind of step-up ‘The Kid’ has been calling for and an opponent that should allow the Florida trained fighter to show he is step-up ready.

“Todd is very tough but this is the kind of fight I need,” said Coyle. “He’s much better than his record suggests and a few of his losses were close fights against top opponents but we’ll be ready for whatever he’s got,” he adds before predicting the Bally Sports App broadcast fight will be an entertaining one.

“Expect fireworks, its going to be an outstanding performance on the night and Antonio Todd is going to bring it as well, so it should be an explosive fight. For me this is a stepping stone toward a world title, that’s how big it is for me. I’m treating this as my world title fight.”

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 sports for a living for over 20 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