Re: Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez IV
James DeGale gives up European crown in pursuit of world title
James DeGale has given up his European super-middleweight title as he turns his focus to winning a world title.
The Beijing 2008 Olympic champion beat Pole Piotr Wilczewski in October 2011 to win the belt, defending it twice.
DeGale claimed a points win over Fulgencio ZuOxiOxiOxiOxi recently to win the WBC silver belt and European Boxing Union rules forbid boxers to hold any world title as well as its own crown.
"It's a shame that I have had to choose between the two belts," DeGale said.
After beating Wilczewski to win the belt, DeGale saw off Cristian Sanavia and Hadillah Mohoumadi in his two defences.
"It has been an real honour to be EBU champion. However, I feel my decision to relinquish the European belt is the right decision at this stage in my career," he continued.
"I've won it and defended it twice and I feel the best course of action is to defend my WBC belt on route to a world title.
"The WBC belt will give me a wider choice of world-class opponents."
DeGale's only defeat of his career so far came in May 2011 against domestic rival George Groves when he lost his British title on points.
Kell Brook's postponed world title fight against Devon Alexander has been moved to 23 February.
The Sheffield fighter, 26, was due to take on Alexander for the IBF welterweight title on 19 January but an ankle injury suffered in training meant the fight had to be postponed.
It was originally due to be staged in Los Angeles, but will now take place at the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.
Brook currently boasts a record of 29 wins from 29 fights.
He knocked out Argentina's Hector Saldivia in the third round of their fight in his home town of Sheffield in October to become the mandatory challenger for the IBF welterweight title.
It will be his first challenge for a world title and he will be up against the 25-year old American Alexander, who has won 24 of his 25 bouts, with 13 knockouts.
Brook tweeted on Tuesday : "Feb 23 I'm gonna show the world just how special I am. I'm gonna bring this world title home for Britain."
Brook's promoter Eddie Hearn told the BBC last month that he is confident Brook can beat Alexander, who won the IBF title with a unanimous decision over American Randall Bailey.
"Devon Alexander is very skilful and quite tricky," said Hearn.
"He's not the biggest puncher in the world but he is technically very gifted and he's only 25.
"Kell needs to go in there and put it on him with a new level of intensity. He needs to go in there and stop him and I think he can do that.
"He wants to win the title and he wants to win it in style. This fight could change his life."
It has been reported that Brook could face fellow Brit Amir Khan next, should Khan move up to welterweight.