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Doheny still on Roman and Akhmadaliev trail – ‘The Power’ promised big 2020 fight

It a case of Dubai disappointment but not disaster for TJ Doheny [22(16)-2(0)].

‘The Power’ has revealed his shock defeat to Ionut Baluta won’t have a major impact on his big fight plans.

MTK Global have assured the former IBF super bantamweight world champion that he will be involved in a significant fight before the year is out.

Before the surprise reverse, Doheny had plans to rematch with Danny Roman [27(10)-3(0)-1] and fight Roman defeater and now WBA and IBF world champion Murodjon Akhmadaliev [8(6)-0] – and it seems defeat has delayed rather than distinguished that dream.

In fact considering they both lost their last fights and their first encouther was such an entertaining affair it’s quite possible Matchroom and DAZN could make Doheny Roman next with the winner getting the man who holds their old belts.

Either way the Australian based Boston trained Laois man has been assured of a relevant opponent later in the year.

“I was so devastated,” he told Off The Ball. “That was a keep busy fight and then we were going to move on to bigger things,” he added before assuring it wasn’t as dramatic a set back as people first thought.

“It’s kind of a little set back now. MTK have promised me it’s not going to cause any difference. They still have a plan in place for me. I have to keep working and stay in the gym. Everything will fall into place and I am still going to have a big fight toward the end of the year.”

When discussing the defeat to Romanian Baluta, Doheny suggested he took his eye off the ball.

The WBO European rankings title holder had upset previous and has qualities to be admired, but the 34-year-old former world champ is adamant Baluta isn’t a fighter he should be losing to.

“I was on such a high because I was sitting in the mandatory position. I was sitting in the box set for eliminators with all the governing bodies. Doing an interview before the fight I am talking about fights with Danny Roman and Murodjon Akhmadaliev , which were going to be happening before the end of the year…I don’t know did I take my eye off the ball a little bit,” he adds before suggesting the 10 round element also played a part.

“I am still going so many scenarios to try and level with myself, make myself feel better about what actually happened on the night.

“No disrespect to the guy Baluta, he beat me, I have to take the loss on the chin, this is going to sound disrespectful, but a fighter like that shouldn’t be giving me a problem.

“It was just a freak night. I am kinda blaming it on the fact I am a 12 round fighter and I was only getting going after four rounds. If you were ringside you’d see he was blowing hard and that’s why couldn’t see the urgency in me. I thought I was bossing the rounds and scoring the harder punches, but obviously the judges were looking for that amateur style and peppering. ”

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