Easy work – American dismisses Luke Keeler threat

Luis Arias [18(9)-1(0)] is expecting an easy night’s work when he takes on Luke Keeler [16(5)-2(1)-1] Saturday’s huge Top Rank card at Feile an Phobail.

The American has been relatively quiet since the eagerly anticipated fight was announced for the Michael Conlan undercard, but broke his silence in somewhat dramatic fashion when he landed in Belfast yesterday.

The 29-year-old former amateur of note laughed off any suggestions of a career changing win for the Dubliner.

The world rated operator claims after studying the Ballyfermot fighter he doesn’t see anything worrying and is confident of an easy win.

Arias, whose sole defeat came against former world champion Danny Jacobs, claims he is too experienced, too big and too good and is adamant he should be ‘heavy favourite’ ahead of the fight.

“I’ve done my research on Keeler, but I don’t think it will be too much of a tough fight. I’m the bigger and more experienced fighter, and I’ve been on the world stage several times,” the American said.

“I’ve been in 12 round dog fights earlier in my career but he hasn’t, and I think that will be the difference in this fight. I’ve worked really hard in the build up, and a month ago I was in Japan training with Ryota Murata,” he adds.

“I should be the heavy favourite in this fight, as I’ve had tough battles in my career and my only loss is to a world champion. I don’t even know who his losses are against. Everyone I should have beat I have, and the difference in class will show on Saturday.”

All but one of the Milwaukee middleweight’s fights have played out in America, but the well traveled amateur isn’t concerned with fighting in front of a packed Belfast venue.

“Belfast has been great and it will be a packed house on Saturday. I’m blessed to take my talents all over the world, and it’s an exciting and fun time right now.”

Keeler vs. Arias is part of a massive card at Falls Park, that is main evented by Michael Conlan facing the toughest test of his career so far when he takes on Diego Alberto Ruiz.

A huge bill also includes Paddy Gallagher vs. Chris Jenkins for the British & Commonwealth welterweight titles, Padraig McCrory vs. Steve Collins Jr for the Celtic super-middleweight title, Alfredo Meli vs. Araik Marutjan, Sean McComb vs. Renald Garrido, Olympic hero Paddy Barnes, Dennis McCann, Callum Bradley, Sean Duffy and Dee Sullivan.

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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 sport for a living for 19 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: [email protected]