Darragh Foley’s Grand Plan

DARRAGH Foley is a man with a plan.

The talented southpaw faces off with Japan’s Ryuji Hatchimitsu Ikeda in the fourth defence of his WBA Oceania super lightweight title at The Star Casino in Sydney tomorrow. If victorious, Foley also stands to collect the WBO Oriental and interim WBC Asian Boxing Council belts.

It’s the ranking that comes with these belts that Foley sees as his big chance to eventually contend for a world title.

“The plan was four title fights this year and obviously with (Terence) Crawford moving up all those belts become vacant,” Foley said.

“I want to be strongly positioned in two of the organisations so that early next year I will be ready to fight for a world title and I will be ready to win a world title as well. That’s the plan.”

Foley’s late inclusion on tomorrow’s undercard gave him little hope of securing an opponent worthy of his lofty aspirations but he’s grateful for the opportunity and has vowed to make a statement against his Japanese foe.

“I’m looking forward to fighting and grateful that I have been added to the card,” Foley says.

“Look, I’ll be honest with you, my opponent isn’t a world-beater, but he is the best opportunity I could get in front of me. Believe me when I say this, he will be dealt with accordingly.”

With names like Sakio Bika, Kris George, Tim Tszyu and Jack Brubaker all fighting on the one card it will take a mammoth performance from Foley to truly stand out but he’s adamant that his showing will be the one everyone’s talking about.

“You will see a super-scintillating showcase,” he said.

“It’s a high-profile card. You have some great fighters on it. I want to make sure my name will be on everyone’s lips when they leave the venue.”

Victory over Ideka is just the beginning for Foley. He plans on fighting again in December and this time against a highly rated opponent.

“I’m firstly going to get this guy out of the way and then everything will be in place for a big December fight,” Foley said.

“That’s going to be against someone who is ranked or a good solid opponent. I just want to be able to solidify my position and see what going on with who’s fighting whom for the vacant titles. Then next year, start making some noise and really start getting amongst it.”

Foley’s plans may be audacious but he’s under no illusion that he has things he needs to work on. A trip to the United States high on his list of priorities for 2018.

“In the New Year I’m definitely going to head back over to the states for an extended period of time and just get around those gyms,” he says.

“Just sparring and learning my craft a little bit more.”

Success often begins with a well thought out plan and it’s clear that Foley has just that. He has a long hard road ahead of him but it’s obvious that he’s ready for the challenge.

“I’m just going to put everything in place so that I will be ready for that opportunity,” he concludes.

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Words: Dan Attias/Follow Dan on Twitter
Photo: Louie Abigail