JULY 8 Jonny Stapleton
‘Big Bang’ Willie Casey has jumped in bed with the former enemy and will make his comeback on September 3 after joining forces with the man who plotted his world title downfall earlier this year.
The Limerick man has signed a three deal with Gary Hyde the manager of Guillermo Rigondeaux, the Cuban sensation that stopped Casey in a WBA interim world title fight in City West in March.
Cork man, Hyde, who runs Nowwhere2Hdye Promotions, has promised Casey will return to action for the first time since that defeat in Limerick on September 3. He also crevealed he will put the former European champion out twice more prior to 2012 before organising another assault on the European title in the new year.
Hyde now believes he has the best super bantamweight in the world in Rigondeaux and the best super bantamweight in Europe in Casey and stressed if the September 10 Kiko Martinez and Carl Frampton EBU title shot comes off Casey will fight the winner.
“I am thrilled to have signed Willie Casey,” Hyde told Mirror Sport. “I have always been a fan. He is a tough kid, a great pro, a big name and a star. I am delighted to be his manager. Willie will fight three times between now and December. All his fights will be in Limerick starting with one on September 3. We are looking at Daniel Kodjo Sassou the fighter who Patrick Hyland faced recently for his first opponent. In the new year we will challenge for the EBU belt. Willie is positioned nicely in the rankings and he will face the winner of Kiko Martinez and Carl Frampton. Whoever has the belt then will have to watch out for Willie Casey. We won’t let anyone step over him,” Hyde added.
While the Cork based promoter has targeted a return to the top of the Continental pile for his new charge he has not limited Casey to the European scene.
He claims by this time next year the former European champion will be competing in world level bouts similar in nature to the one’s potential pound for pound champion and now stable mate Rigondeaux is pursuing at present.
Hyde also emphatically ruled out Rigondeaux Casey II.
“Willie Casey will not fight Rigondeaux again. I won’t let that happen. They are stable mates now and while I am in Willie Casey’s corner I won’t let them fight. This time next year however we plan to have Willie fighting on big cards in America. The types of fights Rigo is chasing down now are the fights Willie will be competing in next year. Once we get to European level we will look at progressing to the world stage again.”
To become continental ring king for a second time, Casey, who was stopped in the first round of his world title attempt, could have to over come Belfast prospect Frampton in what would prove only Ireland’s second ever all EBU title fight.
But Hyde is confident that if Frampton does take the blue strap once owned by Bernard Dunne from the waist of Kiko Martinez, Casey will re claim the belt by beating another domestic fighter in a continental fight.
“Willie already beat Paulie Hyland to take the European title. He can beat another Irish fighter in Carl Frampton if he has too. I have no doubt about that. It would be a great fight.”