Flanagan seeks convincing lightweight title defence over Magdaleno
After claiming the WBO world lightweight crown from Jose Zepeda in July, Manchester ace Terry Flanagan is out to prove a point in his first title defence against mandatory American challenger Diego Magdaleno (28-1, 12 KOs).
This weekend, the Manchester Arena was initially set to host the middleweight showdown between Andy Lee and Billy Joe Saunders, but a cut to the latter fighter in sparring has seen Flanagan become the main event on his home turf.
The 26-year-old secured the lightweight strap three months ago when the former champion Zepeda dislocated his shoulder during their bout and was unable to make to the third round. After the unfortunate manner in which Flanagan lifted his title, the Mancunian is out to make a statement and prove he is the world’s best 135 pounder, as he enters his bout as odds-on 8/11 favourite with Coral for a successful defence.
“It’s always a big occasion when the Americans fighters come over to Britain and especially when there’s a world title on the line,” said Flanagan.
“There’s that extra heat because the Americans are big, loud and brash and think that they’re the best so it makes you train that extra bit harder to give them a good hiding in the ring.
“I know that Britain has a special relationship with the Americans with very close political, cultural, trade and military links. We stand side by side in any armed conflicts, but on the night that me and Magdaleno fight, hostilities will be ignited and the only trading that will be done is between me him.
“Once I deal with Magdaleno, there will be no questions about my credentials of being world champion. I can’t wait now, I’m only a few days away from the fight, my training has been perfect and now I’ve got to put everything into action on the night.”
The undefeated ‘Turbo’ Terry faces a tough test against Los Angeles-born Las Vegas resident Magdaleno, who comes into their bout on the back of his first ever career defeat, after losing by unanimous decision to Roman Martinez.
This hard-hitting southpaw is 11/10 to cause an upset in front of Flanagan’s home supporters at the MEN Arena on Saturday night and has upped the intensity ahead of his title shot, claiming his opponent didn’t properly earn his lightweight title.
“The title was basically given to Flanagan, while I’ve worked for everything,” the 28-year-old American added. “The fans won’t be in my favour, but I’ll use that as fuel to motivate me.”
Flanagan will look to down Magdaleno for the first time in his career and prove his worth as WBO lightweight world champion, after controversially claiming the strap, but a victory on home soil will make a genuine statement in this testing division.