• Super middleweight

DeGale plans six fights in next year

ESPN staff
April 24, 2012
James DeGale is looking for a world title shot in the near future © PA Photos

James DeGale has promised to take his career to the next level over the coming year after a "fantastic" meeting with boxing legend Roberto Duran.

DeGale, fresh off his successful European super-middleweight title defence against Cristian Sanavia in Denmark, met the legendary Duran at his gym in East London - picking up a few pointers as he prepares for a busy 12 months inside the ring.

"If I'm half as good as he was, I'll have a fantastic career," DeGale told The Sun. "He's still sharp as a razor at 60 as when he was smashing his rivals all around the ring.

"It was fantastic to meet such a legend and he gave me a few pointers in our short workout. I'm hoping he'll be ringside at my next fight."

Duran fought 119 times in his career, winning 113 of them. DeGale doesn't expect to match that sort of productivity, but is targeting six fights over the next year as he looks to secure a world title shot as soon as possible.

"I don't think I'll get anywhere near Roberto's 119 bouts but I do know that I intend to be a lot busier as the fight against Sanavia was my first in six months," he added. "I'm hoping to fight at least six times this year, I don't mind if they are eight rounders or 12 rounders just as long as I am seeing action inside the ropes.

"My target is to fight for the world title inside 18 months. I'm bitterly disappointed I've not done it already as the intention was to win a world crown before the London Olympics came around."

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