Conrad Cummings promises redemption in Luke Keeler rematch


Conrad Cummings [16(7)-2(0)-1] is plotting redemption next month.

The Coalisland middleweight gets another shot at Luke Keeler [15(5)-2(1)-1] and is promising that he will perform this time.

Cummings was defeated by the Dubliner last April but notes that there were outside factors which contributed to the wide scorecards loss.

‘Mr Dynamite’ claims that, this time round, he will be at his best and that this is bad news for Keeler.

“I know if I perform then there’s only going to be one winner,” states Cummings ahead of their second meeting at the Ulster Hall on Friday March 29th.

“It’s a massive fight, to be headlining at home. It’s a chance for redemption, it’s a hard fight, I’m looking forward to it.”

The Tyrone puncher feels he was far from his best on the Frampton-Donaire undercard and admits that “no excuses, the better man won on the night.”

“There were things I did wrong in the build up to the last fight. When I fought Luke I had just joined Jamie Moore and I had stuff going on behind the scenes with my old team, no excuses but that wasn’t ideal.”

“That’s all settled, I’m into my groove now and I’ve been gelling well with Jamie. We’re feeling better all the time and I’m looking forward to showing the progress.”

“I’m just looking forward to showing my full worth on March 29th.”

Since that loss to Keeler, Cummings has rebuilt quickly and wins over Nicky Jenman and Jan Balog then led to a chance to reclaim the WBO European title that was on the line when he fought Keeler.

The 27-year-old ended up widely beating Hungarian light middleweight late replacement Ferenc Berki but things could have been a lot different.

Keeler, who had won the vacant belt versus Cummings, had been set to defend versus Brian Rose but was forced to pull out of that clash with a back injury and gave up the title. Meanwhile, Cummings reveals that he was set to face another Irish fighter – believed to be Alfredo Meli – but saw this fight shelved and ended up stepping in for Keeler only for Rose to then drop out.

Things have opened up for the Ulsterman who is now ranked #15 with the WBO – Keeler is rated 12 making their rematch, by definition, a world title eliminator.

Cummings described how “I was due fight in Belfast in December against another Irish fellow but he pulled out, Luke Keeler pulled out of his fight [with Brian Rose], Brian Rose pulled out of his fight against me, then I stepped in and won the belt again.”

“I might have had a bit of misfortune in my career at different stages, but I feel as though I’ve had some good luck recently, so long may that continue.”

“I feel like I’ve been here before. This fight puts me right in the mix, it will probably put me top 10 in the WBO world rankings, the doors are wide open, the belts are all there to be challenged for – but I’m fully focused on Luke Keeler for now.”

“Eventually, the world stage, there are so many big fights out there. Billy Joe [Saunders] had the world title but obviously he has had a lot of stuff going on. There are so many big fights out there but the only fight that is on my mind now is Luke Keeler.”

While it is a massive opportunity professionally, it is an important fight personally for Cummings.

He outlined how “I’ve two losses and this is my twentieth pro fight as a professional career – and one of them [losses] was a robbery against Ronnie Mittag. Luke beat me fair and square so this is my one true loss, and I’m looking forward to challenging myself and showing how good I really am.”

“I’m lucky, once again I’m headlining at home in front of such a big support. I’m humbled that my supporters have stuck by me and I’m going to do them proud.”

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: [email protected]