Michael Conlan targetting super-bantam world title fight this year

Michael Conlan plans to drop from featherweight to super-bantamweight this year. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker.
Andy Watters

MICHAEL Conlan plans to drop down to super-bantamweight and target a world title shot, possibly by the end of this year.

The reigning WBO inter-continental champion, has lined up appearances on the undercard of an Oscar Valdez-headlined bill in Los Angeles in June and Belfast's Feile an Phobail in August and will then drop from the nine stone featherweight limit to the 122lb (eight stone, 10 pounds) super-bantam division.

“I've done Dexa (bone density) and bodyweight scans and in terms of muscle mass I'm well capable of getting down to 122lbs in a healthy way and I'd still have 10 per cent body fat,” he explained.

“Whether or not it's different when you actually do it (cut the weight) is going to be the test but it's something we're going to have to try. I could have weighed 124lbs for the last one (on St Patrick's Day) so I think I will weigh-in for the next one at 124lbs.

“That will be a target because we have spoken to Top Rank and there are opportunities there for fighting for a world title before the end of the year if I can get down.”

Three of the current super-bantam champions are due to fight inside the next six weeks. Laois native TJ Doheny (IBF) and Daniel Roman (WBA) meet in California on April 26 while Emanuel Navarrete (WBO) rematches against London-based Isaac Dogboe in early May. The reigning WBC champion is Rey Vargas.

“I would be absolutely huge at super-bantam,” said Conlan.

“By the time I'm in the ring to fight at featherweight I'm a welterweight, so if I'm going in like that fighting super-bantamweights I'll have a bit of an advantage.

“I'll go 124lbs for this one and see how I get on, I don't have to make it right away but just to know that I can get there is the test for me. I'll stay at 126lbs for the next one (in August) and once I get that out of the way I'll drop down.”

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