'I’m only just getting started!': Scott Fitzgerald interview
Photo: Jan Kruger/Getty Images
Fresh from his sensational victory against Anthony Fowler, an elated Scott Fitzgerald tells Shaun Brown: "I can beat anyone at 154lbs"...
After all the hype and all the crossfire on social media we wondered if the fight would live up to expectations.
Scott Fitzgerald vs Anthony Fowler did that and more at the Echo Arena, Liverpool last Saturday night.
The two unbeaten super welterweights put their records, their reputations and their mouths on the line when they went after each other – finally – over ten rounds for the vacant WBA International belt, a shot at Ted Cheeseman’s British title and perhaps more importantly in the short term – bragging rights.
Fitzgerald, 27, emerged victorious with a split decision win (95-94, 94-96, 95-94) to settle their vocal feud which sees the winner move on to greater things leaving Fowler to dust himself down and go again once the body and mind have recovered.
“It was the best night of my life and I’m buzzing, it was a great time. I hope I create more nights like it,” Fitzgerald told Boxing Monthly while still clearly elated by the events of the weekend, which took his unbeaten record to (13-0, 9 KOs).
But while it may take until the next fight camp to wipe the smile off his face, Fitzgerald told Boxing Monthly that he can be so much better than he was against Fowler and predicted: “If I fight him again tomorrow, he wouldn’t last four rounds.
“No one thought I would, but I knew I would win, trust me. I knew,” he continued.
“I knew for ages and it were going to be easy. This rubbish, slow guy… listen, I could have danced about more and made it even easier. I could have put out simple jabs and straight right hands but it’s good because I’ve learned because of how close the score cards were.
"I thought I won at least six or seven rounds and I knocked him down. I’ll never be lazy enough to let someone survive again. If I’d have got a draw or lost, I’d have been fuming. In my next fight I’ll be at least five times better. If I had committed to throwing bigger punches earlier, I’d have got him out earlier.”
The moment that would prove decisive in the fight for the victor came in the tenth and final round with just over a minute to go. After surviving what looked like a torrid ninth where Fowler went all in with the kitchen sink and more, Fitzgerald regrouped, went back to his boxing and landed a howitzer of a right uppercut in the final round, followed by three left hands which eventually put Liverpool’s Fowler down, leaving his North-West rival on the cusp of victory and to many, including the bookmakers, a huge upset.
With Fowler holding on, in hope that he had done enough on the judges’ scorecards to get the nod, it was left to his fellow 2014 Commonwealth Games gold medallist to finish the job. The necessary punches went whistling by and in the final 25 seconds Fitzgerald took it upon himself to beckon his former amateur team-mate over to him, with his hands down, looking to set the final trap. BM asked him why he did this.
“I thought I’d won it comfortably,” he answered. “And so, I were having a little buzz about with the best night of my life and I didn’t want it to be over. I thought just let me have a walk and tell the muppet to come over here. And that’s the truth. Let me tell you something the guy can punch harder than average man, but I just thought you are not getting a reaction out of me because I will die in here to win this fight.
"And that’s how I feel now, and I was hoping the fight would calm me down. It’s made me worse because I want everything else that is out there because I can beat anyone at 154lbs. I’m only just getting started, I’ve only scratched the surface. I want everyone!”
An excited, jovial and eager Fitzgerald told BM he would fight Fowler again tonight if their promoter Eddie Hearn trebled his purse. The fighter has itchy knuckles and is desperate to go again, such is the momentum he is feeling and the cloud nine he sits atop.
Cheeseman later in the year, a further climb up the WBA rankings, a Fowler rematch? Fitzgerald just wants to get back to punching once his “Panda eyes” have healed from Saturday night. There’s even been talk on Twitter of Fitzgerald facing one-time 154lbs world title challenger Brian Rose, who at 34 is looking to rebuild his career since losing to one of his own rivals – Jack Arnfield – back in 2017.
“I’m from Preston and he’s from Blackpool and when I was young, before I ever had an amateur fight, he was the boy there. For me to be now here, the A-side, Brian coming to fight me…. I’m looking at everyone, even them Americans who have world titles and I want them as soon as.”