Buckland aiming to catch eye and find new promoter

GARY Buckland will attempt to use his Welsh mega-fight with Gavin Rees as an audition to find a new promoter.

The 27-year old tackles rival and former world champion Gavin Rees in Saturday's Reloaded show at Cardiff's Motorpoint Arena.

Friends and sparring partners become foes in what is a mouth watering battle for Welsh fight fans with both boxers in desperate need of victory in front of the Sky Sports cameras.

Newport trained Buckland, 27-3, who boxes out of St Joseph's, was knocked out last time out by Stephen Smith in the fifth defence of his British super featherweight title.

And Rees, 37-3-1, a former light welterweight world champion, has lost two on the spin, against Adrien Broner in Atlantic City and then to domestic rival Anthony Crolla.

So both 'The Dynamo' Buckland and 'Rock' Rees need to get back to winning ways, but there is certainly more at stake for Buckland.

Rees is in the twilight of his career, win, lose or draw and he's also enjoyed some big pay days.

But Buckland is hoping he can catch the eye, especially as his promotional deal with Ricky Hatton has concluded.

"I'm not with anyone at the moment, my agreement with the Hattons reached an end and I am not sure what'll happen next," explained Buckland, who is managed by Brian Powell.

Buckland knows Welsh fight fans have waited a long time to see him face the Newbridge puncher and expects an extremely tough night.

"I know that for Welsh fight fans, this fight is a long time in the making, a lot have said that to me, but for me, if I am honest, it hasn't been," he explained.

"When I was starting out Gavin was a level above me and over the years we've gone our different way in terms of our weights, but now the chance is here to make the fight and I was happy to do so.

"I think it's a fight my trainer, Tony Borg, has always fancied for me though. Even when Gavin was at world title level, he used to say I could beat him.

"Gavin and I are similar characters in the sense that we do our talking inside the ring, not outside of it. I am familiar with his style, he's very awkward to hit and I know this from sparring."

Buckland knows the smart tactic is to let the fight go long against a boxer six-years his senior, but he's prepared for it to be more frenetic.

"It could be that it will come down to stamina, I have a good engine and at 33-years old, he tends to tire at the end of fights and that could be to my advantage," he said.

"I am prepared to fight and box, either or, I think Gavin will be the same, it could be about attrition but it might be a war and a bit of a tear-up."

Buckland believes he's totally over the disappointment of a horrible 2013.

"Winning the Lonsdale belt outright is always on my mind, it's my dream, but I can't look past this fight and make any decision on whether I stay at lightweight or go back down to super feather," he said.

"I don't feel too down about my last fight though, it was a great shot, he put me to sleep for a minute, but it wasn't like I was beaten up.

"There is plenty more I can give to the sport, I feel I have a lot left to leave in the ring."

But Buckland confessed he's only interested in the biggest opportunities.

"It's been a frustrating time. One minute I'm supposed to boxing in Argentina for a WBC silver title, the next minute they are trying to get me on a Sammy Sims show and with respect, that's not me, that's not where I'm at in my career," he said.

"I relish a challenge and this is exactly that. Gavin Rees, a big show, I can't wait for it."

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