17 November 2010 – Jonny Stapleton
European super-bantamweight champion Willie Casey will prepare for his mandatory defence against Kiko Martinez with a non title bout in Cork on January 24.
The pint sized power puncher, who was yesterday honoured by the City of Limerick in a Civic Reception, makes his first EBU title defence in March, but only after he fights on a Dolphil show in a bout he is reluctant to label a warm up for the Spainish star.
And after being a special guest at Munsters defeat of Australia on Tuesday Big Bang is now dreaming of beating Bernard Dunne defeater Martinez in front of a packed Thomond Park.
But whilst he admits he would love nothing more than to fight in the home of Munster rugby, he thinks the Martinez fight might prove a bit too early for a Thomond sell out.
We had choice between the Dolphil show on December 10 or January 24 and we thought best I appear on the January show next, Casey told the Mirror.
It isnt a warm up though. That is a little disrespectful. I wont be taking anything for granted. I am a scalp now and I expect my opponent to be all out against me. I wont be thinking about Kiko until eight weeks before our March fight, the humble star, who seems to have captured the Irish public’s imagination added before discussing Thomond Park.
I was in Thomond on Tuesday and it was amazing. I was picturing myself fighting Kiko with over 23,000 people shouting and screaming. It really would be unreal. If me and Andy Lee were to fight there on the same bill that would be sensational and great for Limerick. The Kiko fight might be to early but maybe one day for a World title.
The Limerick native also stressed he has used the fact Mini Tyson Martinez pulled out of their original fight to boost his confidence.
I am telling myself Martinez pulled out of that fight because he didnt want to fight me not because he was injured. It gave me a massive boost before the fight with Paulie and it will do the same when I face him.