THERE have been 15 Great Britain Olympic gold boxing medallists in the modern era but none ever won a world professional title, although James DeGale is hell bent on becoming the first.
The newest goal in Chunky’s life is to go where the likes of Chris Finnegan, Audley Harrison and Terry Spinks trod – but never succeeded.
And the next step for the Harlesden-based former Dale Youth champion (pictured) is to knock over Croatian fighter Stjepan Bozic at The Glow, Bluewater, on Saturday and defend his WBC Silver super-middleweight title.
“This year is going to be a big year for me,” he said.
“I’m looking to be the first ever British Olympic gold medallist who goes on and wins a professional world title and I just want to show my fans, and especially the British fight fans, what I’m made of.”
This will be DeGale’s second fight of 2013, announced just 12 days after debuting in the USA by demolishing Sebastien Demers in the second round.
But the Slovenian-born Croatian looks to be a tougher prospect, after Bozic lost to former middle and super-middleweight world champion Arthur Abraham only because he damaged his hand in the second-round.
He has also fought for the WBA World super-middleweight title against Dimitri Sartison, only to be stopped on the advice of the ring doctor for a badly swollen left eye.
But DeGale is far from taking the task lightly.
“I’m not overlooking anyone. Whoever gets put in front of me I’m training for it like it was a world title fight,” he added.
“I know that there are big names out there aiming to put on a great show, so if either (Carl) Froch or (George) Groves feel ready for a domestic super fight I hope they realise I’m ready for them too.”