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Joe Gallagher will pull Crolla out if Brodie fails weight


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Article from an interview with Joe Gallagher yesterday




Fight fans are in for a treat in Wigan on the 27th of November as two top Manchester fighters are set to go head-to-head over eight rounds, with Michael Brodie, aged 35 and a former world title challenger, taking on Anthony Crolla, 22, a former ABA champion and highly touted prospect.


Brodie will step into the ring for only the second time since his loss to Scott Harrison back in 2005, a defeat that saw him retire from the sport. Brodie made a successful comeback in August, stopping Mark Alexander in four rounds after an enthralling battle, which saw Brodie get off the canvas twice before halting the plucky Londoner.


Around the same time, Anthony Crolla set about kick-starting his career after his points loss to Gary Sykes in a British title eliminator back in May. Crolla signed with Hatton Promotions and also moved to Gallagher’s Gym in Denton. This is set to be Crolla’s second fight under Gallagher, after winning a 4 round decision over John Baguley on the Matthew Macklin European undercard.


After Brodie’s win over Alexander, trainer Joe Pennington commented that Brodie had not lost the weight correctly and that the same mistake would not be made next time. Joe Gallagher spoke to Boxingscene yesterday to comment on Brodie’s weight and the upcoming fight.


“Anthony Crolla is in fantastic form in sparring, but I’m sure Michael Brodie is going to bring his ‘A’ game,” said Gallagher. “I’d also like to publicly say that if Michael Brodie doesn’t make the 9st 4lb weight the day before there will be no fight.”


Gallagher continued: “I will pull Anthony out off the contest if that happens. We asked for championship conditions and for the fight to contested over 10 rounds but that isn’t happening. It was agreed that the fight would be made at 9st 4lb but if Michael can’t make the weight there will be no fight.


“Crolla is 9st 5lb today. He is a natural featherweight and will fight at featherweight after the Brodie fight. We all know Brodie struggles at the weight but that isn’t my problem. The weight agreed was 9st 4lb and I am prepared and willing to pull Anthony out if the terms aren’t met. I have to look after the welfare of my fighters. Anthony Crolla is paying me to do a job - I will do the right thing for Anthony and for his career. Let’s just hope that everyone sticks to the deal and makes the agreed weight limit.”


Gallagher then moved onto the fight itself, and how tough it will be for his fighter, indicating that, in his opinion, Brodie is still a world-class fighter. “It will be a cracking fight, tickets are going well and there is great interest across the city,” enthused Gallagher.


“The Anthony Small-Thomas McDonagh British title fight might be the headline bout but the fight that everyone is talking about is the Brodie/Crolla fight. There is a buzz around Manchester; there always is when Brodie is fighting, as he is a fantastic fighter. But Anthony is really fired up and sparring well.


“We are watching lots of video tapes of Brodie to get our tactics right. It’s going to be hard for me to plot the downfall of my favourite fighter, a fighter who I feel is the best British fighter not to have won a world title.”


Gallagher, however, is still annoyed that the fight is scheduled for eight rounds. “There are titles available,” he continued, “the British Masters is still vacant after the Jon Kays fight got cancelled the other week. This fight is worthy of being a title fight. Brodie is a championship fighter and for this fight not to be a championship fight just isn’t right. You have the experienced legend against the young pup and I think the fight will only be warming up after eight rounds.”


Come the 27th November fight fans will see whether Brodie’s comeback was the right choice, or whether Crolla can finally fulfil the potential he showed during his amateur days.

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