YOU will be hard-pressed to find a more apt tagline to describe Dennis Hogan’s next fight than the one currently offered.
Every form of media collateral presented by cutting-edge Brisbane promoter DDP Sports has the phrase ‘All or Nothing’ emblazoned across it. And in Hogan’s case, it couldn’t be more fitting.
Recently made the mandatory challenger for the WBO light middleweight throne held by Jaime Munguia, it makes little sense from a promotional stand-point to fight in the meanwhile.
Despite the apparent risk, Hogan (27-1-1, 7 KOs) will put everything on the line on Saturday night, including a pair of regional baubles, against Welsh wildcard Jamie Weetch in Brisbane.
“Fighters might fight their whole lives and never get the chance to be the number two beating a number three like I did in April,” Hogan told Aus-Boxing.
“To start the year off with that kind of win, fighting Jimmy Kelly and getting such a comprehensive win, that was a great start to the year.
“As the year rolled on we were next in line and we thought we may get called up for a fight, but that didn’t happen.
“There was a little bit of frustration there, but we were able to turn a negative into a positive.”
Having finally secured mandatory status to face Munguia (31-0, 26 KOs) in the foreseeable future, Hogan believes one last win will put an exclamation point on an already impressive year.
“With a good win here, which I’m very confident in, I will be able to look back on the year as the pathway to my world championship,” he explained.
“Throughout the whole year, I’ve been the next in line – but we weren’t made the mandatory challenger – so I was like what do we need to do?
“We were asking them what do we need to do and getting nothing from them. All we were told was to stay active.
“We’ve had a great ranking at number three with the IBF, so that’s where Jamie Weetch comes into play. He is ranked fifteenth by the IBF, so we asked his team if they were keen and they were.
“In the meantime, I was then made mandatory by the WBO at their convention in Panama, so we could never predict this. But I’m delighted to now have this fight.
“It’s a great way to finish off the year, I’m not taking him cheaply. I do want to get in there and make a statement and it will set me up beautifully for next year. I’m very confident in getting the win.”
A vast majority of Australian fighters navigate their path to world title honours with minimal risk, and in many cases, are well within their right to do so.
With Hogan, it made little sense to risk his lofty status against Weetch (12-2, 5 KOs), but with the fight now within reach, Hogan reveals a championship mentality like few before him.
“It’s all in Jamie’s favour,” he conceded.
“All the risk is on my side. But my mentality is that if you want to be world champion, and I mean a legit world champion, you need to be able to have these fights and win them.
“I’ve always had to fight whomever – and fight in the best fights I could get – that’s been my mentality. I believe it’s part of the journey and another piece of the puzzle to become the full fighter I need to be and I’m glad to be honest.
“You have got to be able to win these fights, and win them well, if you want to be a legit world champion.”
Although many hours have been spent with head trainer Glenn Rushton creating a style based on rhythm-breaking attacks, Hogan remains staunch in his counter-punching approach.
With that in mind, the Brisbane-based Irishman sees only one looming tactic from his opponent.
“They’re gonna want to walk me down, which is very logical,” he concluded.
“I mean he’s not going to develop skills overnight to be able to deal with everything I have. He’s going to try to walk me down, because that’s what they think will be their strongest plan.
“To me that’s just going to walk into my hands and my power has increase phenomenally and I’ll be looking to sink those shots in.”
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