Irish Down Under planning to build Aussie challenge to Katie Taylor


The Dubliner making waves promoting in Australia believes he may have the answer to Katie Taylor’s opponent problems.

DDP Promotions boss Paul Keegan is adamant he has signed a lightweight that will not only be a viable opponent for the world renowned and respected WBA-IBF world champion, but one that will produce nothing like the timid performance Cindy Serrano produced in Boston last month.

The man who works with Danny Dimas at DDP Promotions and has just secured Dennis Hogan WBO light middleweight mandatory status, claims Deanha Hobbs [7(5)-0] is coming for Taylor and is confident that public demand will bring about the fight in 2019.

The relatively new-to-the-game show-hoster admits his charge is a complete unknown outside of Australia at present but believes that there is potential there for a big fight.

Keegan is aware that he will have to build up the “mean” Oz fighter but also has a plan in place that could find Hobbs quick passage to the end of the female fight rainbow and a lucrative fight with the Matchroom superstar.

If profile can’t attained quick enough to ensure a 2019 clash, Keegan believes that they can force themselves into contention by picking up one of the two world title belts not held by Taylor [11(5)-0].

First though is a WBO Asia-Pacific super featherweight title fight with Baby Nansen on the Dennis Hogan v Jamie Weetch undercard in Brisbane on December 15th.

“We have been working with Dee Dee over the last while,” Keegan explained to Irish-Boxing.com during a visit home last week.

“This will be her third fight on one of our shows. If she wins the title on our December show she will be the best pound-for pound female fight in all of Australia. She has only had seven fights, but the problem with Dee Dee has is similar to the one Katie has – she can’t get opponents.”

“She is a lightweight but she is the light welterweight Australian champion and the welterweight champion too. She just had to move up to get good fights and to find opponents willing to fight her. She is that scary,” Keegan added while giving some background to the Australian fighter who herself has stated her desire for a Taylor fight multiple times over the past 12 months.

“Her dream fight, she has always said, is Katie Taylor. She wants to test herself against the best and who is better than Katie,” he continued before revealing a plan to secure that clash.

Keegan wants to appeal to Taylor’s undisputed desire to ensure the fight is a cert.

“So, December 15th is the WBO Asian Pacific title. She fights former WBC world title challenger Baby Nelson. Win that title and what we are going to do is chase the WBO world title.”

“The champion is Rose Volante and at the minute it looks like she doesn’t want Katie. With the WBO Asian Pacific title we have a ranking that allows us to fight her. We also have a good working relationship with the WBO.  We will look for that and if Dee Dee wins we would fight Katie in our first defence if they wanted.”

“Katie wants to be undisputed so that is a route to that fight for us.”

While a world title would make ‘The Silencer’ all the more attractive to a strap hungry Taylor,  securing a shot at Volante, whose team are to stay in South America, is not a given.

In that case, Hobbs would have to be built and some work needs to be done to ensure the DDP fighter is mentioned alongside the likes of Amanda Serrano, Delfine Persoon, and Chantelle Cameron.

Keegan outlined how “we need to build toward that fight, we understand that, but there is route and we would love it next year. It might be the end of the year, but Dee Dee wants that fight.”

“We need to raise her profile. We are honest enough to admit no one knows who she is as of yet, but keep an eye out for her. I believe they will have to fight.”

“Katie needs opponents they are clear on that and DD will become more than just a viable option,” he added before elaborating on why Hobbs and Taylor is a fight the public would love.

“Look, Dee Dee would put up a hell of a lot more of a fight than Cindy Serrano. She is strong, quick and she is very, very aggressive. She would come to win not to survive and I am sure everyone agrees that is what Katie needs.”

Keegan is aware of the reaction a Taylor call out might bring. Indeed, he has had social media criticism for mentioning the two together already.

However, having watched Hogan go from Australian champ to soon-to-be world title challenger, he is aware that big fights are attainable. The successful businessman is also a ‘shoot for the stars’ type of operator and was delighted to see Hobbs has similar big time ambitions to him.

“It’s funny because when you suggest on line you want the fight people, mainly Irish lads, say ‘don’t be a fucking idiot, Katie is the best in the world’. I think that is the whole point!”

“Dee Dee is a talented fighter with ambitions to be the best in the world, but you can’t be the best until you fight the best. Why wouldn’t we be working toward that fight?”

There have been plenty of times Irish people in the game have had plotted the downfall of Irish fighters, however, so revered and loved is Taylor, that it’s possibly the only time it would cause real emotional conflict.

Keegan admits he, like most, is a Taylor-ite but stresses in this case he has to do what is best for his fighter and his business.

“It would be a bit weird for me,” he laughed.

“I would be like ‘go Dee Dee! – but not really’ and ‘go on Katie! – but, then again, no’.”

“It is what it is, it’s a good fight, good business, and the biggest pay day in women’s boxing we can secure for our fighter who is a good person and a great fighter.”

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