9 December 2010 – Jonny Stapleton
Anthony Fitzgerald is planning to add the WBF Intercontinental middleweight title to the Irish super-middle crown already in his possession on Friday, before adding the big names of John Duddy and Andy Lee to his record.
The Pride challenges Kevin Hammond , who this year suffered two narrow defeats to British title challenger Martin Concepcion for the BBBofC Midlands Area title, in the National Basketball Arena for the vacant title.
And the Dubliner is hoping victory in his first bout at the lower weight will enable him to secure bigger fights with Irish middleweight marquee names.
I want Lee and Duddy, Fitzgerald explained. I want to be testing myself against the best Irishmen in my division but thats for another day. Right now Im not looking past my fight with Hammond. We have looked at some tapes of him and hes a tough lad with a good punch too. Im feeling in top form though, probably the best Ive been in and that belt will not be leaving Dublin. We did say earlier in the year that we would be pushing on now and I am delighted to be fighting for another title. I am focused and I feel in great shape for this one, fans can expect to see a top performance.
Head coach Phil Sutcliffe is also very happy with preparations for the title fight and believes Fitzgerald is on the road to big things.
Anto is looking excellent in the gym. Hes had the best of sparring for this fight with both the McDonaghs and Kenny Egan. The move to middleweight is perfect for him and hes hitting harder then ever. I believe after this fight Fitzy will be on everybodys lips, he is in great shape for Hammond who is not a bad boy either, hes a tough lad and its going to make an excellent fight.