17 May 2011 – Jonny Stapleton
EBA Champion Anthony Fitzgerald has been named as the eleventh best middleweight on the planet by the WBA.
The Pride is now just one ranking shy of boasting a top ten world status after the South American based governing body moved him one rung up their ranking’s ladder. However despite boasting his best ever middleweight standing, Fitzgerald, who was crowned Irish Champion of the Year in January for regularly defending his super middleweight domestic strap, is ironically enduring the worst lull in his career. Despite being called out by fellow Irish middle weight contender Andy Lee and former WBO world champion Bronco McKart the Pride is struggling to secure what could prove a breakthrough fight.
Fitzgerald, who became the first man to beat the durable Afiff Belghecham in March, claims there is no news of an upcoming bout nor no new challenge on the horizon as of yet although his new found ranking and EBA champion status should entice the more recognisable opponents he craves. The Dolphil fighter admits he will have to be patient over the coming months but stressed he is training readying himself for any would be challengers.
This is the first time I have heard I am number 11 in the world and its great news. It fills me with great pride. It motivates me even more to keep training and to make it further up the ladder, Fitzgerald told www.irish-boxing.com.
There is nothing happening of late. Everything has gone quiet since I won the EBA title. It seems harder to get fights. My name is out there now, but nothing solid has materialised. We heard nothing more from Bronco after he called me out. Andy Lee is fighting this week maybe after that fight our teams can come to some agreement. I am eager to get that fight on. There are no further developments yet, but hopefully we can get it made.
The lack of positive fight news hasnt stopped Fitzgerald from working in the gym. In fact if anything the Crumlin based puncher is working even harder.
I am still down the gym and putting the effort in. I have to ensure I am ready if something does come up. I am willing to fight any middleweight out there. I was just saying last week I would love a crack at Darren Barker.