Win in Brisbane tomorrow afternoon and Dennis Hogan retains his guaranteed shot at the WBO light middleweight title but it seems that hasn’t stopped him worrying about being messed around by the governing body.
The Aussie-based Kildare man had to watch on for over year as a promised shot was continually placed on the back burner.
The Kilcullen man has been highly-ranked for all of 2017 and 2018 and fought top 10 opponents in his last two fights, yet had to watch on as a WBO title fight got delayed and delayed through no fault of his own.
Shock losses, allergic reactions, and voluntaries have all left Hogan waiting in the wings but he seemed to have finally been given a break recently.
Mid-camp for his clash with Jamie Weetch, the 33-year-old’s promoters DDP Sports confirmed they had secured mandatory status for the brown light middleweight strap held by Jaime Munguia and thus have been guaranteed a shot in the New Year.
However, it seems Hogan isn’t too trusting and this week suggested he may go the IBF route in 2019.
Ranked #3 for the red belt, with mandatory Julian Williams at #1 and the #2 slot blank, a win over Pan-Pacific champion Weetch followed by a final eliminator could put Hogan in line for a fight with another physically imposing champion, American Jarrett Hurd who also holds the WBA belt.
Indeed, if Williams, for whatever reason, was to turn down or be unable to fight Hurd when the IBF mandatory falls due, the offer would pass to Hogan
“We’ve been calling out for the champion with the WBO and he’s not looked at us,” Hogan told Sporting News.
“He’s fought the number four and the number three, so it’s a little bit frustrating there.”
“But with the IBF, we’ve been told a win here and we’ll get a title eliminator early next year against the next in line.”
“That’s what we’re aiming for.”
“I’m not knocking on the door, I’m kicking the door down to get my opportunity, and this is a big fight and I’m looking to make a statement.”
Before he can consider a WBO shot against the winner of Munguia’s January voluntary versus Takeshi Inoue – or an IBF eliminator – Hogan must first overcome Weetch.
The Welsh fighter comes into the clash with a #15 ranking with the IBF and has certainly cut a confident figure.
However self belief is not something Hogan is short on and he is promising a statement win and a career defining performance.
“Weetch is number 15 with the IBF – a good solid fella – he has a lot of will and looks like he’s confident,” added the lilywhite.
“But I’m ready to go. I’m ready to beat Jamie Weetch and put on a career-defining performance.
“My last fight was me ranked number two against Jimmy Kelly ranked number three, so it doesn’t really get bigger in terms of rankings and who moves on to fight for a world title. I did get a good win and I learned a lot from that fight.”