George Kambosos Jr has walked right into Gary Cully’s line of sight.
The Australian became one of the biggest names in boxing by dethroning the man [Teofimo Lopez] who beat the man [Vasyl Lomachenko] to become undisputed lightweight champion last weekend – and as the main man at 135lbs he instantly becomes the subject of Cully manhunt.
The Sarto stylist has never been shy about revealing world domination as his long the term goal and every move he makes is with world titles and massive success in mind.
So having attained all the lightweight belts on offer in Madison Square Garden earlier this week the Australian becomes Cully’s #1 target.
“Of course, one billion percent, [Kambosos would be a target for 2022] he’s got all of the belts! That’s what I’m here for, that’s exactly what I’m boxing for, so he’s number 1 target right now,” Cully tells Irish-boxing.com.
It’s not a big call out from the Pete Taylor trained talent it’s more a final destination frame of mind. Cully [13(7)-0] is aware there will have to be pawn or two taken first – but every move is made with eventually being able to declare checkmate on the lightweight king – whoever that may be at the time – in mind.
“To get the fight I’ll probably have to force myself into a mandatory and push it that way,” he adds before noting he is nigh on the perfect representation of ‘one to avoid’.
“I don’t see Kambosos picking a 6 foot 2 slick southpaw with knockout power as a voluntary – so I’ll probably have to aim to keep climbing in the WBO and get myself in a nice position in a couple of other bodies also and try and force the fight”
Finishing 2021 sitting at number 9 in the world with the @worldboxingorg 🌎 I used to dream about shit like this when I started boxing as a kid. 2022 I’m coming for that number 1 spot! See you soon @georgekambososjr 😎 #TheDivaEra pic.twitter.com/YFx8U1TyGb— Gary Cully (@BoxerCully) November 30, 2021
The confident ‘freak of nature’ and prospect of note doesn’t believe he needs to bank more experience before sharing a ring with the world titleholder, he is confident he could beat the undisputed champ now. However, Cully knows how the game works and is aware he does need to prove he is shot-worthy first.
“I think I could beat him in the morning, but I also respect the game enough to know that I haven’t earned the right or put myself in a position to call him out just yet,” he continues.
“I’ve got a bit more work to do and a bit more to prove before I do that. He’s a great fighter and was really impressive last weekend, but that’s the level I believe I’m at and if he’s the guy I need to beat to become world champion then that’s what I’ll do.”
One fight that could close the distance between Cully and a world title shot is Lee Selby. It’s one that seems to have been strategically mentioned recently, one the Naas fighter is open to but one he doesn’t see happening just yet.
“I actually didn’t mention Lee Selby, that fight was talked about in an interview a couple of months back, and then Lee Selby was mentioned to me in an interview recently, and I of course said I’d love to fight him,” Cully explains.
“He’s a former world champion, just lost to the new undisputed champ on a split decision. I’ve said from day one that these are the type of fights I want to be involved in and the level I want to operate at, so of course I would fight him. It wasn’t really a call out, but then it gathered legs and got a bit of traction so I ran with it and tried to see if it could maybe happen – but no it’s not really on the cards right now.
“I see he’s just got a final eliminator for the IBF so he’s possibly one fight away from being Kambosos mandatory and fighting in a rematch for undisputed- so of course he’ll go that route. Maybe we’ll meet in the future possibly but not in my next 1 or 2 fights.”
Cully does appear to be on the verge of a big step up. In fact, the Irish and WBO European ranking title holder reveals he was set to end the year in a ‘big fight’ only for injury to get in the way.
A bit of a blow but rather than wallow or take a rest Cully did his best to turn a positive into a negative.
“As a whole, it’s been a successful year,” he says. “Becoming WBO European champion in March then getting another good win in June. I was looking to finish the year with a big fight but I picked up a little injury that kept me out of fighting for a few weeks and forced me out of that fight.
“That was originally a frustrating time but I stayed in the gym and set some goals for the gym while I couldn’t fight. I worked on reaching them. I learned a lot about myself in the couple of weeks I was injured and it’s made me even more hungry to achieve my goals.
“Ideally, I would’ve fought three times this year but it is what it is. I believe these things happen for a reason, so I’m just looking forward to whatever’s next for me, the plan for 2022 is to fight four times and to have some massive fights. I’ve got massive plans for the next 12 months so that’s what I’m looking forward to now.”