McCloskey prepared to go Stateside in pursuit of World title glory

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PAUL McCloskey is prepared to take a chance at breaking into the American boxing scene in his pursuit of world title glory.

The Dungiven light-welterweight made the revelation after learning his proposed IBO title fight with Chris van Weerden collapsed beyond repair this week.

McCloskey, who currently holds the WBA’s Inter-Continental strap, also revealed his frustration after his promoter, Eddie Hearn, failed to match him up with a world rated opponent.

Hearn had offered ‘Dudey’ the chance to fight former English champion, Curtis Woodhouse on the undercard of Kell Brook’s rematch with Carson Jones in Hull on July 13th but the Co. Derry man was ‘insulted’ at the prospect.

McCloskey claimed he would have nothing to gain from fighting Woodhouse and regarded it as being a step in the wrong direction if he was to take up the offer.

And as Hearn was unwilling to stage a proposed IBO world title fight against van Weerden in Belfast, McCloskey faces a situation where he may have to travel to the USA to further his career prospects.

“They always say that you’re a small fish in a big pond when you go to America but until you go over there and try it, you don’t know what you’re capable of doing” said McCloskey.

“If you’re good enough then you’ll make it. I have a timescale at the minute and I have things I want to push on and do and I plan on working hard as always and see how far I can go.”

Rated No.12 in the WBA world rankings, McCloskey is hoping he can secure a top ranked opponent so he can break back into the top 10.

“We’re just looking at options at the minute, we’re shopping around and seeing what’s available,” he added.

“I was to fight in Hull in July but that was against Curtis Woodhouse and, without sounding arrogant, that was an insult personally.

“It’s a joke. I would regard that as about eight steps down. Woodhouse hasn’t even fought for a British title for God’s sake.

“I’ve dropped down to number 12 in the world rankings. In world boxing that’s still a good ranking but I’m there because of my inactivity and not my boxing ability.

“It is frustrating. For me, the least I expect for my next fight is a defence of my title.”