News December 2009

Femi Fehintola: I want Carl Johanneson rematch

Femi Fehintola: I want Carl Johanneson or Gary Sykes next

By Lee Collier

Femi Fehintola returns to action on Sunday at the Octagon in Sheffield with the intention of getting his name back into the title mix. It was just over a year ago that Fehintola lost to Ryan Barrett within three rounds in an English title fight and his second fight on the comeback trail is against Daniel Thorpe.

The loss led Fehintola to change trainers as he uprooted over the Pennines to join Joe Gallagher’s gym in Denton. Fehintola returned to action in October beating Sid Razak over six rounds scoring a knockdown in the fourth round before winning on points comfortably.
Fehintola was pleased with the Razak fight but feels he can still show improvement. “The Razak fight was brilliant and I was back in the gym on the Wednesday after helping Crolla out for the Brodie fight, explained Fehintola.

“This time we have just built on where we left of last time. I’m stronger, but I can’t say fitter as I was unbelievably fit last time out, I’m faster and a lot more solidly built and you’ll see on the weigh-in.”

With a new trainer and his first fight in 12 months you can generally expect things that need working on. “The fight was okay considering, I watched the tape back and there are things I did wrong, but you will never get it perfect. My elbows weren’t tucked in enough wasn’t punching fast enough but this performance you will see a lot more speed and going through the gears.”

Fehintola’s other loss came against Carl Johanneson back in 2006 for the British title and with Leeds based Johanneson due to make a comeback there is a possibility of a rematch.

“I hear Carl Johanneson is coming back so maybe we could fight for the English in March which would be a good fight,” stated Fehintola. “I would also fight the winner of Sykes and Burns for the British and I reckon Sykes will come out on top. We could then have a Dewsbury/Bradford derby fight for the British.”

Fehintola is scheduled to fight in his home town of Bradford in February which is clearly important to the fighter. “I am due to fight in February in Bradford for possibly an Area title, or it may be for an African title which has been mentioned,” stated an excited Fehintola.

“Fighting in Bradford is really important for me, and hopefully I will be doing it twice a year from now on. You never know, with any luck we may get to see the Fehintola/Johanneson rematch in Bradford.”

Before the talk of title’s Fehintola must first get past Daniel Thorpe and trainer Joe Gallagher is keen to make sure there are no slip ups.

“He has been sparring with Anthony Crolla and Joe Murray, they come back in right after their fights to help Femi out and he is looking in great shape. Femi had a nice comeback win and hopefully he will get another against Daniel Thorpe.

“It is a tricky fight for Femi as sometimes Thorpe comes to win so it will hopefully be six competitive rounds. Thorpe is capable of upsetting the apple cart and can still whack but Femi is in great shape and strong and will come out on top.”

Gallagher has mentioned before that he wants to take things slowly with his new fighter but is quietly confident that 2010 will be a good year for Fehintola.

“We don’t want to rush Femi back into the title mix, we want him to get there and say there,” explained Gallagher. “After Sundays fight we can sit down and look at the title situation and see which way we want to go.

“I want him to have an eight rounder next or maybe a ten round English title fight if it can be made. It all depends on his performance against Daniel Thorpe, but if he builds on the good performance against Sid Razak then things could open up in the title mix for him.”

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