Experienced fighter Ashley Theophane has responded positively to being called out by current IBO welterweight champion Chris Van Heerden, although the Brit was quick to point out that the South African will now have to back-up his challenge.
Van Heerden, 26, told WBN earlier today that he would be willing to put his world title on the line against Theophane, either on the Londoner’s own turf or in his second home of America and negotiations are now expected to begin in earnest.
Johannesburg-born Van Heerden, who defeated Matthew Hatton in March via a unanimous decision to retain his belt for the second time, singled out Theophane, who in-turn gave his response to WBN this afternoon.
“It’s come to my attention through World Boxing News that IBO world champion Chris van Heerden wants to fight me,” said Theophane.
“I’ve never watched him fight, so I know little of him as he is unknown outside of his county of South Africa and he is obviously using my name for publicity.
“Van Heerden has never fought no one as good as me and he has not beaten anyone of any note. He seems to be a 20-fight novice, but I will consider taking his belt.
“His promoter, Showpony Promotions can contact my advisor Rene Carayol and we can make this fight. It’s easily done. The only time Chris fought outside of his country he lost and this will happen again.
“I’ve fought Danny Garcia, DeMarcus Corley and Delvin Rodriguez. I’m built for the big leagues and I am the wrong guy to try build your career on,” he added.
32 year-old Theophane took WBC and WBA light-welterweight king Garcia to a close split decision in the aforementioned bout, along with defeating former world champion Corley and highly-ranked 154lber Rodriguez.
By his own admissions Theophane would say that his career went off the boil during his recent spell as Lonsdale Belt holder, although two victories, coupled with extended training camps at the Mayweather Gym in Las Vegas have reinvigorated the ‘Treasure’ and this offer may have come at the right time.
19-1-1 Van Heerden on the other hand, proved way too much to handle for the younger Hatton last time out and really should be undefeated after being robbed of a win in Serbia in 2010.
Both Van Heerden and Theophane look well-matched on paper and if talks go well, the potential fight has all the ingredients to be a fan favourite – whether it takes place on UK or US soil in the coming months.