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Michael Conlan puts world champs, Fulton and Nery, on notice

Michael Conlan [15(8)-0] is confident his Feile fight will be a warm up for a world title shot.

The Top Rank fighter has had a number of false world title dawns over the last 12 months but maintains a sunny disposition when it comes to his 2021 world strap hopes.

The Olympic medal winner had hoped to fight for the WBO super bantamweight world title at last August Feile, only for the pandemic to put paid to that. There was then talk of a possible March 2021 tilt but again traveling to New York was not possible because of the current lie of the land health-wise.

It was then suggested WBO world champion Stephen Fulton may be tempted to Belfast to put his title on the line against the World Championship gold medal winner at the Falls Park on August 7. However the 126lbs the titlist had already agreed a Showtime showdown and will go into unification action with WBC world champion Louis Nery.

WBO #1 Conlan has had to show patience as a result but watches on content in the knowledge his time coming.

The popular former Irish amateur standout, who recently defeated ‘Irish Slayer’ Ionut Baluta and has an August 7 Belfast date in the pipeline, revealed he is mandatory for the WBO strap, so the winner of Fulton versus Nery on September 11 will have 90 days to defend against him or vacate.

“I definitely think I’m on the brink [of challenging for the WBO title] but these boxing politics just pisses me off,” Conlan told Metro.co.uk.

“Fulton, who is a fantastic champion, already had the fight lined up for 11 September for the winner of a fight that hadn’t even happened yet [Figueroa vs Nery]. It is crazy, it hadn’t even happened yet. And he was fighting the winner. I don’t understand why but I do understand the game. And I understand how it is played. So I know now I’m in that mandatory position still and that mandatory will have to be announced right after that date on 11 September and they will have 90 days to face me.

“That’s how it seems it is going to happen but, in the meantime, I’ve got to box, I’ve got to stay active. I will have another one in between. There have been some names thrown about but that looks like it is going be the first weekend or second weekend of August.”

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sports for a living for over 20 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com