By Jonny Stapleton
Andy Lee faces a somewhat disappointing ‘keep busy fight’ tonight but assured his time is coming. Lee hopes his middleweight clash with Saul Duran in Detroit is his last before a world title.
The Limerick fighter believes he has earned the right to upgrade from contender to
challenger and is upset has yet to secure the shot he deserves and with how 2012 has panned out so far.
The world ranked former Irish Olympian was meant to fight on the undercard of Matthew Macklin and Sergio Martinez’s world title fight next weekend, but couldn’t find suitable opponent. He now faces a ’keep busy fight’ against Duran, a relative unknown and a Mexican he should dispatch with relative ease.
The fighter legendary trainer Emanuel Steward calls his ‘left handed Tommy Hearns’ believes he is on the verge and is hoping his next fight will be for a world title.
“There has been a lot of uncertainty regarding my opponent over the last week, but I’ve trained well and I’m very focused. You know it’s always dangerous when you go into a fight thinking it’s a tune-up. You can’t take anyone lightly but it is just a keep busy fight, Lee explained to One the Ropes Radio Show.
“I have this fight and then hopefully it leads to a bigger fight later on in the year. I’m ranked in the top ten across the board. The champions face a rounds of fights coming up, but I want to fight those guys. I believe I’m ready. I believe my time has come. I’ve put the work in, I’m with the best trainer in the world, I got the best team around me, and it’s time. The time is coming.”
Lee could get one such champion in June. Xx belt holder Julio Chavez jr is looking for a Summer opponent and Lee has been installed as favourite to fill the role. It is a position Lee has certainly applied for over the last few months.
“There has been mention of me fighting Chavez. I’m not sure where it’s at right now. I know Martin Murray is also being mentioned. Hopefully I can get the fight. I’ve made myself clear that I want the fight—I think I can beat Julio Cesar Chavez! I think my time has come. They can’t deny me forever. It’s been frustrating. I’m missing on the Felix Sturm fight, I’m missing out on fighting Martinez, but I’ll keep going and keep winning, and hopefully my day will come soon.”