Busy Week For Joe Calzaghe

Calzaghe figures three more fights and then retirement

It’s been a busy week for undefeated WBO/IBF super middleweight champion Joe Calzaghe.

Everything started out okay when he won the Board of Control’s British Boxer of the Year award for his wins over Jeff Lacy and Sakio Bika. But then the IBF stepped in and threatened to strip Calzaghe of the belt (his belt, their belt) he won in March unless he fights a mandatory against the 25-year-old Russian-born German Robert Stieglitz.

Although Steiglitz has 28 straight wins and is ranked near the top of the IBF’s list of challengers, his name recognition is slight to nil and as a result is an unlikely challenger for Joe, who is eager to break into the American market and has his eye on a spring bout with Peter Manfredo Jr., former star of The Contender.

Amid all the ups and downs, last night Calzaghe revealed his plan to emulate the great Rocky Marciano and retire unbeaten, possibly at the end of next year.

“Getting a belt I worked so hard for taken away does bother me, Calzaghe told icWales, but business is business. My plan is to fight for another year and get out undefeated so now I want the biggest fights with the most money. I need American TV giants HBO to get excited about my fights. They want me to fight an American so if the Stieglitz fight doesn’t add up, I’ll knock it on the head and wave the IBF belt goodbye.”