It’s just over a week since the fight with Kid Galahad now. I haven’t sat down and watched it back properly yet but I don’t need to do that to know that I’m capable of much better. I like to think I’ve proven that over the years and especially in the last couple of fights.
Barry spoiled the fight from the very start and I just couldn’t get fully into my rhythm but I don’t think there’s any doubt about who was trying to win the fight. He was potshotting and holding but I was throwing in fours, fives, and sixes. They didn’t all get through but one or two were catching him. I’ll give him credit for a couple of things. He was very strong inside when he was holding.
I always thought I was good inside but I might have to take up Brazilian Jiu Jitsu lessons I think. He also had one brilliant trick where we’d be in a clinch – again – and he would manage to open his hand in his glove and get hold of my nose. God knows how he managed that.
It might not have been as spectacular as my last couple of performances but I managed to grind it out. That’s what champions do. I thought I really made sure of the victory in the championship rounds.
I did an interview with Boxing News in the week before the fight where I said that the success I’ve had has made me even more determined to go on and achieve more and that there was absolutely no way that Barry wanted it more than me. I think I showed that.
Anyway, there are no hard feelings. Me and Barry had words but we sorted out our differences over twelve rounds and we can go our separate ways.
Last weekend I swapped the First Direct Arena for Doncaster Racecourse. My team mate, Reece Mould, fought for the English featherweight title and stopped the brave Sean Davis in four rounds. The left hook Reece finished the fight with was highlight reel stuff. Thankfully Sean was okay and Reece is on the title trail now. I beat Chris Male for the very same English title all the way back in 2012.
Before I knew it I was fighting on Sky Sports and just look how things have moved on since then. Reece has to be ready because the opportunities should start coming thick and fast but he’s been around us for a long time now and he’s been able to see first hand exactly what it takes to reach the top. I know he can do it.
What’s next for me? I’ve cleared up in Britain now. In Lee Selby, Carl Frampton, and Kid Galahad I’m proud to have beaten the other top three featherweights over here and there isn’t anybody else left for me to face.
From now on, I have to be mixing with the other top guys in the division and the only challenges left for me lie Stateside. I usually feel a bit sore after the fight but I felt perfectly fine last week and I’ll be ready to get back in the gym soon.
I’m sitting at number two in the Ring magazine rankings just behind Leo Santa Cruz. If the top two fighters in a division face each other, The Ring title is on the line. It’s always been my dream to win that belt and be recognised as the best featherweight in the world. Now it’s within reach.
What do you say, Leo? Let’s get it on for my IBF and your WBA title and we’ll throw the The Ring Magazine belt in too. You game?