Luke Keeler is ready to bite the bullet in a bid to shoot his way into the middleweight reckoning.
The 28 year old Dubliner looked primed and ready to kick on in 2015 after he secured a Matchroom deal, but suffered a somewhat disappointing 12 months, as a hand fracture cost him Prizefighter victory and the chance build his record.
However, ‘Cool Hand’ now has three possible dates lined up before April and is ready to go full time in bid to push his win tally to 12 and beyond in 2016.
The Ballyfermot middleweight is one of a number of Irish boxers inspired by the approach of UFC World Champion Conor McGregor, who has sparred out in the Celtic Warriors Gym, and believes it’s a case of all or nothing as well as now or never in terms of his career.
Keeler is ready to give up his engineers job to focus fully on the fight game and will become a full time boxer in 2016.
“This year will be the year. I am going to go full time this year. It is all or nothing for me to be honest,” new father Keeler told Irish-boxing.com.
“You see the likes of McGregor he puts everything into it and he gets the rewards. I am going to do the same and I know for a fact that I will go 10 or 20 percent as a fighter.
“If you look at it I am doing 40-50 hours a week in work and then coming into the gym and your kidding yourself to a degree. You can be carrying the stress of work or driving from one end of the country and back. You are not doing yourself justice . Plus the twins are there now! They are a full time job!”
The issue at the tail end of last year wasn’t so much dedication for the Pascal Collins trained 160lbs fighter. Rather, once fit he struggled to get a run of fights, not an issue going full time would really change.
However, he is adamant he will have a busy 2016 with Matchroom dates lined and an option to fight on MGM’s small hall Dublin shows and knows if he registers impressive wins over the next few months he will be well placed to challenge for major titles.
Indeed Keeler, who hopes to follow up a keep busy clash on February 6 with a March 5 eight rounder and then an April title fight.
“With MGM running shows in Dublin I can fight on the smaller shows and they have been good enough to tell me I can do that. So I have that safety net there. There is fights there for me. Matchroom have given me two dates already and its only the start of the year. It’s the right time now. It is hard to make that leap when you have a mortgage and kids now, but this year it is there for me.
“I can’t make excuses anymore. Now I have to do it. I am 28 and I am in my prime. I am feeling stronger than ever and it’s up to me to deliver. ”