According to his new manager Jay Byrne the Kildare native will challenge for the Irish title in February of next year and will most likely face off against ‘Danny Boy’ for the strap.
The popular Pete Taylor-trained talent has heard Keating’s name dropped for February, although points out he is unaware of the specific details with regard to that possible match-up.
However, both fighting for the title and the step-up test appeal.
“It looks like Danny Keating for the Irish title in February,” he tells Irish-boxing.com.
“I don’t think it’s agreed or anything and he might have other options or another route he is going to go down. I don’t really know but that’s what we are hoping for. If not Danny, someone for the Irish title in February.”
The JB Promotions man admits he hasn’t see too much of a fighter who began his career in Australia but knows enough to expect a ‘dangerous’ fight.
“I think he is a dangerous fight, he’s a good lad, a good boxer. Again it’s challenging myself and that’s why I’m looking for these fights.”
It’s understood Byrne tried to make the exciting domestic match-up for last Friday’s show, which Kelly appeared on. It was obviously too soon for the Munster man, who enjoyed a Cork homecoming last month.
“He didn’t have enough time,” an understanding Kelly says.
“This whole show came out of nowhere so we offered to him out of nowhere as well. It wasn’t enough time for him to prepare and I understand that. I’d be the exact same for a tough fight offered at three or four weeks’ notice. You want a real camp for a tough fight, so I respect his decision.”
Kelly was speaking at the Red Cow after he registered his fourth win of a surprisingly busy 2023. His very late replacement, Edgar Kemsky, a Belfast-based Slovakian came to fight and proved as game as he was awkward, something the Leixlip man, who opened the show so he could get his white-collar fighters home early, was happy with.
“He was there to win. He wasn’t there to get paid and sit down, so fair play to him. I don’t want journeymen that are going to just come, cover-up, and come to get paid. I want people to challenge me so I can progress and learn from the fights. It’s about getting lads like that to challenge me so I can learn. Different styles of journeymen develop fighters and that’s what I’m looking for.”