MEXICAN JAUNT SETS UP BUCKLAND TITLE TILT
GARY BUCKLAND believes his victory on the Saul Alvarez-Ryan Rhodes undercard is the boost he needed to defeat British super-featherweight champion Gary Sykes, again.
The Hatton Promotions hopeful outpointed local Jose Roberto Gonzalez on the bill in Guadalajara earlier this month.
Buckland, 25, is back home in Cardiff waiting for the results of next month’s purse bid for his clash against Sykes, which the British Boxing Board of Control have ordered.
Gary knocked out Sykes in 45 seconds back in November when he landed the £32,000 winners’ cheque in Prizefighter.
Buckland, victorious in 23 of his 25 fights said: “I have been waiting a while to prove my win over Sykes was no fluke and the Mexican trip tuned me up perfectly.
“It was a fantastic experience fighting on a major overseas card and everybody made me so welcome.
“It was a great experience being around Ryan Rhodes and his team. It has given me motivation to be in my own big fights.”
Hatton Promotions CEO Gareth Williams who accompanied him on the trip added: “We will continue to give our fighters opportunities to fight on big bills around the world.
“His achievement was all the more remarkable because he didn’t only have to cope with a very tough opponent in front of his own fans, but extreme temperatures and altitude.
“It will hold Gary in good stead and I hope he will top his own big cards one day.”
He was only the second Welshman to box on Mexican soil, emulating Howard Winston who lost a word title fight against Vincente Salvidar way back in October 1967.
Hatton Promotions president Ricky Hatton said: “It was a tremendous experience for Gary and I know he enjoyed the trip.
“What is there to stop him going back to Mexico one day and winning or defending the world super-featherweight title?
“If Gary keeps winning we will make sure he gets the chance to challenge for major titles, and taking the British title from Sykes.”
The clash between Sykes and Buckland is expected to take place before the end of October.