Boxing


Former WBA Light-Welterweight Champ Gavin Rees Seeks World Title At Lightweight

by James Slater - On June 27th, Amir Khan will challenge WBA 140-pound ruler Andriy Kotelnik, as we know. The man Kotelnik beat to become the WBA champion is Welshman Gavin Rees, who has not fought since being stopped in the 12th and final round by the Ukrainian in March of last year, and now the 28-year-old plans to drop down to lightweight. So, as Khan moves up to meet the man Rees lost to, the former WBA champ drops down. At approx just 5'4," the move looks a sensible one for Rees..

Speaking with Wales Online, Gavin spoke about how frustrating things have been for him since losing the light-welterweight world title many said he would not win in the first place. Having been let go by Frank Warren's Sports Network - with "boxing politics" helping to keep him out of the ring as a result of the split - Rees will now be promoted by Joe and Enzo's Calzaghe promotional banner.

The 28-year-old with the 27-1(13) record told Wales Online how he believes he can become a world champion down a weight class.

"My long-term goal is to win a world title and be a two-weight world champion," Rees said. "If I can win one at light-welterweight, then surely I have a good chance of coming down and winning another one. I will fight anyone, I don't care at all. That's the level I want to get back to.

"It's been a frustrating year, but I just want to get back to winning ways. I'm still carrying the flag for Wales and I just want to get some more title for people to be proud of. I know I can't go back in for a title straight away. I haven't been in the ring for a year so I'm not even in the rankings. I just need one warm-up fight and then, providing I'm looking sharp, I could just walk through people like John Murray."

It's certain British lightweight boss Murray will disagree strongly with Rees' assertion that he would "walk through him," but the fight would definitely be an interesting affair. First though, Rees needs to win his comeback fight.

Wales Online reports that Rees will box again on May 2nd, on the Calzaghe promoted show entitled "Second Coming," in Wales. So far no opponent has been named for the former world champ.

One thing is clear, though, Rees will be sticking with Enzo Calzaghe when it comes to who trains him.

"I've been at the Calzaghe gym since the age of nine. So I'm obviously going to show loyalty to Enzo," Rees said. "And it's not just that, what other trainers are there in Wales? I have got three kids here and I'm not going to move to England to train. It's been frustrating that politics have kept me out of the ring. But it's all over now so I just want to look forward to the future."

The world lightweight scene is pretty hot right now, to say the least. Gavin Rees will have to go some to realise his goal of reigning again.

Article posted on 11.04.2009



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