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Boxing News of Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Source: Graphic Online

I’ll be back — Assures Agbeko

Less than a week after his failed bid to annex the WBA and WBO super bantamweight titles from Guillermo Rigondeaux, Ghanaian boxer Joseph Agbeko is planning a quicker-than-expected return to the ring in a determined bid to re-launch his flagging career.

Agbeko lost by a unanimous decision to the undefeated Cuban in a lopsided fight with an appalling punching rate (he landed 48 punches all night, an average of four per round) described by boxing pundits as perhaps his worst performance in recent years.

The former IBF bantamweight champion, who moved up weight to fight the Cuban, has brushed aside calls to quit the ring and said, he planned to take a short break and get one or two tune-up fights before making another attempt at winning a world title in the 122-pound division.

However, he has ruled out a possible rematch with Rigondeaux.

Agbeko’s publicist, Eben Noye, told the Graphic Sports yesterday that the boxer would be back in the ring before the end of the first quarter of next year.

“There is no talk of retirement now; it’s not in our plans,” said Noye, who runs Fresh Prince Promotions, a boxing promotional outfit owned by the three-time world champion.

Despite last Saturday’s setback in Atlantic City, New Jersey, Noye said the boxer was ready to pick himself up and work even harder towards another world title shot next year under his new management.

“We recently signed a promotional contract with Top Rank Promotions and this was just the first fight. Despite his disappointment at the turn of events last Saturday, Agbeko is ready to put the loss behind him and look into the future with confidence because the prospects look promising.

“He will return to Ghana later this month for a short rest and return to the gym in the US to prepare for tune-up fights which would put him in shape for another world title fight,” Noye revealed.

Noye admitted, however, that inactivity in the last two years arising from a contractual dispute with legendary American promoter, Don King, took a toll on the boxer who during his active years as world champion defeated tough fighters such as Yhonny Perez, Luis Alberto Perez and Vic Darchinyan.

Until last Saturday’s world title shot, Agbeko had fought just four times since defeating Colombian Yhonny Perez to claim the IBF Bantamweight title on December 11, 2010.

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