Darren Cruise sets Irish title price tag for Vladimir Belujsky bout

Darren Cruise is open to a fight with Vladimir Belujsky [4(4)-1(0)-1] – but only if there is an Irish title on the line.

‘The Slovak Rebel’ has made clear his intentions to challenge for a title before and after registering his fourth knockout win in Mexico over the weekend and named-dropped Roscommon’s Cruise as a potential opponent.

The 28-year-old solider has no issue with being called out by the 22-year-old Mitchelstown man but claims he will only agree to trade leather if it gives him a chance to fight for the Irish title for a third time.

“In terms of Vlad wanting to fight me, that’s fine, no problem,” Cruise told Irish-Boxing.com.

“I have been in his position looking for a good Irish name to fight so I understand, but if he wants to fight me he can pay me good money because realistically I don’t need him unless it’s for an Irish title.”

Cruise [8(2)-6(0)] still harbours Irish title ambitions having had two single-cruisepoint domestic strap defeats to JJ McDonagh at super middleweight and Luke Keeler at middle and, if he gets another chance, he doesn’t believe it will be a case of third time ‘lucky’.

The Westerner thinks he would breeze past the Bratislava-born Cork man – who needs to fight in a scheduled eight-round contest before being eligible for the Irish title.

“I really want the Irish title I have been very unlucky in my career with the toss of a coin. I could be a two weight Irish champion losing 96-95 twice.

“If Vladimir really wants the fight he can tell Kaz [Evans, Assassin Promotions] to contact me but, unless it’s for a title, I’m not interested. Vladimir is a strong fit lad but his technical ability is very average I think it would be an easy night’s work.”

‘Dynamite’  hasn’t fought since last December but was keen to take part in the Last Man Standing tournament in March. Initially as an Assassin fighter he couldn’t enter but then, as entrants began to pull out, he rejected a late-notice call-up.

Work related issues have played their part in Cruise not fighting this year but will be ready to return and fight soon.

“I have been on a course for work since February which didn’t allow me to train for boxing. The course is finished in four weeks so I will be back in the gym straight away,” he added before discussing the Last Man Standing won by Roy Sheahan.

“It disappointed me at the start because I felt I should have been one of the first names in the competition and I made my feelings known.”

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