Prescott: McCloskey is One of the Final Roadblocks on the Road to Khan

Hammer-fisted Colombian slugger Breidis "The Khanqueror" Prescott (24-2, 19 KOs) has arrived in Ireland for his 12-round WBA light welterweight elimination bout this Saturday against Irishman Paul McCloskey at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast.

The 28-year-old Prescott says he's in terrific shape and ready to smash one of the final roadblocks keeping him from a mandated rematch against (now) WBA Super Champion Amir Khan.

For those who don't recall, Prescott sent Khan to bed with no supper 54 seconds into round one of their fight in September 2008.

But despite the obvious blow to his credibility, Khan has refused Prescott's repeated invitations to a rematch and instead chosen to fight just about anyone but Breidis Prescott, including McCloskey, whom he defeated by shutout six-round decision last April.

"He's going to be running out of excuses soon," said Prescott. "I read that he's taking for McCloskey in this fight... more like he's hoping and praying for McCloskey to win. He knows what I'll do when I finally corner him."

Prescott says he respects McCloskey, but hits too hard and is in too good of shape to be denied.

"Paul McCloskey is an honorable man, but he is between me and proving once and for all I am truly 'The Khanqueror'. So that means he has to go. I'd like to apologize to all the Irish fans that will be out rooting for their man this Saturday at the Odyssey Arena. I'm sorry I'm going to ruin your party, but I've waited too long for what lies ahead to be denied a victory."

Bam on boxing

Philadelphia’s Hottest Fighters

Boxing in Philadelphia can be as erratic as the stock market--up and down, up and down. Philadelphia is fortunate now because the local fight game is on its way up. Not because boxing is more popular now than it was 10 years ago, but because many of the fighters coming out of Philadelphia are hot.

Some of these prospects, such as welterweight Raymond Serrano, junior welterweight Danny Garcia and junior middleweight Julian Williams, do not get the opportunity to fight in front of their hometown crowd on a regular basis. Just because we do not get to see them often should not take anything away from them when they do perform at home. They still are doing big things with their careers.

Serrano won his last bout against Daniel Sostre, of New York, and is now 16-0, 8 K0s. Garcia has beaten ex-world (IBF/WBO) lightweight champion Nate Campbell and is scheduled to box another ex-world (WBO) champ, Kendall Holt, on Sept. 17 in Las Vegas, NV. Garcia is taking back-to-back risks and what else would a boxing fan expect from a Philadelphia fighter.

Williams (left) is 7-0-1 and continuing to test himself. He recently earned a six-round decision win over Raul Rodriguez, of Bakersfield, CA. These three local prospects have a combined record of 44-0-1, 26 K0s, yet they have boxed in Philadelphia only seven times between them. You can see Williams fight at home for only his second time on Friday, Sept. 30, at the National Guard Armory in Northeast Philadelphia.

There are many promising fighters in Philadelphia right now. They include: super bantamweight Teon Kennedy; welterweight Mike Jones; welterweight Ray Robinson; lightweight Karl Dargan; lightweight Angel Ocasio, and cruiserweight Garrett Wilson. I want to take a deeper look into the Philadelphia crop and highlight a few fighters who impress us every time.
Three who come to mind are Ronald Cruz, Bryant Jennings and King Gabriel Rosado.

Cruz, actually from Bethlehem, PA, is an undefeated welterweight (13-0, 10 K0s) who is forcing his way up the rankings. This year he knocked out Dillet Frederick, of Fort Myers, FL, stopped Manuel Guzman, of Lancaster, PA, and forced journeyman Doel Carrasquillo, also of Lancaster, PA, to quit in the sixth round of their scheduled 10-rounder. Cruz is a warrior, a rosado_gabe_0130strong fighter with a good chin.

Heavyweight Bryant Jennings, another undefeated prospect (9-0, 4 K0s) also has had a busy year. He twice out-pointed Theron Johnson, of Chicago, IL, over six rounds, once in Atlantic City in February, once in Las Vegas in July. In between, Jennings out-punched Mike Miller, of Akron, OH, and K0d Philadelphia’s David Williams in three rounds. Jennings has a lot to show us in Philly, so keep an eye on him.

When it comes to the King, there always is excitement. Gabriel Rosado is unique, with a record of 17-5 (10 K0s) and the guy’s got character. He does not hesitate to take risks. Rosado stopped Ayi Bruce, of Ghana, in five rounds July 15 at Bally's Atlantic City for his third win in a row and fifth in his last six fights.

Every risk Rosado has taken has paid off. Earlier this year he knocked out fellow-Philadelphian Jamaal Davis in the 12th round for the vacant NABA interim junior middleweight title and he also upset ex-IBF junior middleweight champ Kassim Ouma in 2009 and world-rated Saul Roman, of Mexico, in 2010. Other risks, such as his fights with Alfredo Angulo and Derek Ennis, paid off even in defeat as Rosado learned things about himself which he put to use in his current winning streak.

Rosado boxes Keenan Collins, of Reading, PA, in the scheduled 10-round main event for the vacant PA junior middleweight title on Friday, Sept. 9, at the Asylum Arena in South Philadelphia. Jennings also is on the show, taking on 6-foot-4 Alex Mejias, of Paterson, NJ, over six rounds, and Cruz will face Christ Fernandez, of Salt Lake City, UT, in the eight-round co-feature to Rosado. I look forward to getting to see these fighters go to work.

The author is a senior in sport and recreation management at Temple University. She recently joined Peltz Boxing. Follow Peltz Boxing on twitter @PeltzBoxing and our BAM @bamonboxing.


Tommy Murphy, President of the Irish Amateur Boxing Association, believes that Ireland's ten-man squad have the talent and the experience to secure Olympic places from the 2011 AIBA World Championships in Azerbaijan.

The World Championships, which begin in Baku in 20 days time, will also act as the first major qualifier for the London 2012 Olympics.

"Everyone involved with Irish boxing wishes our lads the very best of luck and the World Championships, said the IABA President, speaking at today's press conference at the National Stadium gym at the National Stadium in Dublin

"Our boys are really up for this as I've seen so far. You only had to go by last Friday's bout between Ray Moylette and Ross Hickey to show you that. You could send any of these two kids away and they'd do a job.

"We have a very good team, there is no two ways about that. We can see that from their fantastic performances at the Europeans and the various internationals so far. They are in top form and we're all looking forward to the World Championships."

Team manager Des Donnelly added: "This is one of the strongest squads we've sent anywhere, if not the strongest. When you look down the list of our boxers we have Olympic medalist, World medalists and
European medalists. They all have terrific experience at this level and I think they will do very well in Baku."

"The lads performed very well at the European Championships, but that was in June. We have to do it all again at the World Championships. We have six lads in the top eight in Europe. If they're in that position again in Baku then we're looking at Olympic qualification," said Irish head coach Billy Walsh.

Ken Egan, a silver medal winner at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, has been named Irish team captain for Baku.

The Irish squad will leave for a training camp in Cologne with the hosts Germany, Holland, Romania and Moldova on September 11th.

The squad will travel straight from Cologne to Baku.

Boxing begins at the 2011 AIBA World Championships on Monday, September 26th.

Five boxers have already qualified for the London Games through the World Series of Boxing Individual Championships.

There will be one final Olympic qualifier for European male boxers in April 2012 in Istanbul.

Irish Squad 2011 AIBA World Championships & Olympic Qualifiers Baku, Azerbaijan Sept/22nd/Oct 10th

49Kg: (Light-flyweight) - Paddy Barnes (Holy Family BC, Belfast)
52Kg: (Flyweight) - Michael Conlon (St John Bosco BC, Belfast)
56Kg: (Bantamweight) - John Joe Nevin (Cavan BC)
60Kg: (Lightweight) - David Oliver Joyce (St Michael's Athy BC, Kildare)
64Kg: (Light-welterweight) - Ray Moylette (St Anne's BC, Mayo)
69Kg: (Welterweight) - Roy Sheehan (St Michael's Athy BC, Kildare)
75Kg: (Middleweight) - Darren O'Neill (Paulstown BC, Kilkenny)
81Kg: (Light-heavyweight) - Joe Ward (Moate BC, Westmeath)
91Kg: (Heavyweight) - Ken Egan (Neilstown BC, Dublin)
91Kg+: (Super-heavyweight) - Con Sheehan (Clonmel BC, Tipperary)

Team manager: Des Donnelly
Coaches: Billy Walsh, Zuar Antia, Jimmy Halpin
Physio: Scott Murphy
Performance Psychologist: Gerry Hussey
Performance Analysis: Alan Swanton

Squad profiles

Paddy Barnes

49Kg - Light-flyweight

Club - Holy Family BC, Belfast

Age - 24

Stance - Orthodox

Major Honours - 2008 Olympic bronze
2010 European and Commonwealth champion
Five- time (and current) Irish Elite champion

AIBA World rank - 8th

Michael Conlon

52Kg - Flyweight

Club - St John Bosco BC, Belfast

Age - 19

Stance - Orthodox

Major Honours - 2011 Irish Elite champ
2011 Gee Bee Multi Nations Gold
2011 German Multi Nations Gold

John Joe Nevin

56Kg - Bantamweight weight

Club - Cavan BC

Age - 22

Stance - Orthodox

Major Honours, Beijing Olympian.
2009 World bronze medalist.
2009 EU champion.
Four-time (and current) Irish Elite champion

AIBA World rank - 4th

David Oliver Joyce

60kg - Lightweight

Club - St Michael's Athy, Kildare

Age - 24

Stance - Orthodox

Major honours - 2009 EU champion.
Four-time Irish Elite champion

Ray Moylette

64Kg - Light-welterweight

Club - St Anne's, Mayo

Age - 21

Stance - Orthodox

Major Honours - 2011 European Senior champion
2008 AIBA World Youth Champion.
2010 Irish Elite Champion

AIBA World rank: 6th

Roy Sheehan

69Kg: Welterweight

Club - St Michael's Athy, Kildare

Age - 27

Stance - Orthodox

Major Honours - 2007 EU champion
Three- time Irish Elite champion

Darren O'Neill

75Kg - Middleweight

Club - Paulstown, Kilkenny

Age - 25

Stance - Southpaw

Major Honours - 2010 European silver medalist
2009 EU Champion
Three-time (and current) Irish Elite champion

AIBA World rank: 9th

Joe Ward

81Kg: Light-heavyweight

Club - Moate, Westmeath

Age - 17

Stance - Southpaw

Major honours - 2011 European Senior champion
2009 AIBA World Junior champion
2010 AIBA World Youth champion
2011 Irish Elite champion.

AIBA World rank: 2nd

Ken Egan

91Kg - Heavyweight

Club - Neilstown, Dublin

Age - 29

Stance - southpaw

Major Honours - 2008 Olympic silver medalist
Ten -time 10 Irish Elite champion
Three-time EU champion
Two European bronze medals

AIBA World rank - 13th

Con Sheehan

91+Kg - Super- heavyweight

Club - Clonmel BC, Tipperary

Age - 22

Stance - Orthodox

Major Honours - 2009 EU champion
Four-time (and current) Irish Elite champion

Article posted on 07.09.2011

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