Boxing News of Monday, 4 February 2019
Former International Boxing Federation (IBF) World bantamweight titlist, Joseph “King Kong” Agbeko, has advised Isaac Dogboe against an immediate rematch with Mexico’s Emanuel Navarrete.
Agbeko, who held the IBF bantamweight title between 2007 and 2011, advised Dogboe to first get a warm-up fight as part of his preparations for a rematch with Navarrete to boost the Ghanaian’s confidence and his chances against the Mexican.
Dogboe (20-1, 14 KOs) lost the WBO super bantamweight title to Navarrete (26-1, 22 KOs) in only his second title defence at the Madison Square Garden in New York last December.
The 24-year-old Ghanaian upon his return to the country, announced that he would get a rematch with his Mexican conqueror by May, following successful negotiations between the two camps.
However, Agbeko, who lost his rematch with Abner Mares in August 2011, having lost his title to the Mexican on a majority decision earlier that year, admitted to making a mistake by jumping into an immediate rematch in an attempt to avenge his painful loss and to reclaim the title. And with the benefit of hindsight, the former world champion wants Dogboe to get a warm-up fight before facing Navarrete again.
Nonetheless, he wants Ghanaians to throw their weight behind Dogboe in his attempt to reclaim his lost title since the youngster had the qualities to avenge the defeat against Navarrete.
“I wouldn’t advise him to go for an immediate rematch with Navarrete considering the way he lost. I think he should consider a warm-up fight before going out to avenge his painful defeat.
“This is because he needs to regain his confidence before entering into another fight with the Mexican, but I entreat Ghanaians to support his bid to avenge his defeat should the fight take place,” Agbeko told the Graphic Sports last Friday in Accra.
“As you know, I suffered a similar fate in 2011 and that really affected my career negatively, but we are different boxers and I won’t be surprised if Dogboe comes back stronger and better prepared and defeats Navarrete in a rematch,” he added.
Despite being at the twilight of his career, 38-year-old Agbeko is still confident that he would make a return to the ring soon and work his way back to the top once again. His last fight was on September 8 last year when he defeated compatriot Ekow Wilson at the Woezor Hotel in Ho to retain his WBO Africa bantamweight title.