WBO mandatory challenger in the lightweight division, Ray Beltan will watch this weekend’s title bout between Terence Crawford and Yuriorkis Gamboa in Nebraska knowing that his second opportunity to claim a recognized belt is just around the corner
The 32 year-old, who controversially drew with Ricky Burns in his only world title chance to date, will be in place as the number once the dust settles on Crawford’s first defence, and is backing the champion to come through unscathed against the Cuban.
“I believe Crawford is going to beat Gamboa,” Beltran told World Boxing News.
“I hope to fight the winner after I fight on August 9. I don’t know where my next fight will be or who against, but I have to just keep going until that title fight comes around.”
Old foe Burns fights on Friday night in his first outing since the Crawford defeat, although Beltran says he has put tthe disappointing events involving the ‘Rickster’ behind him after initially pining for a return following what seemed a bad decision in Glasgow.
“I’m not interested on a rematch with Burns as it makes no sense to me,” said Beltran. “I beat him already and I am now the number one. August 9 won’t be another eliminator either as that would be like taking a slap in the face.
“I am the mandatory for the WBO title, but anyway those in the business do whatever they want so I just take it a fight at the time. Right now I’m open to fighting anybody anywhere like I always have done and whoever it is on August 9 won’t stop me from reaching my goal.
“I want to fight Crawford as mandatory or even Omar Figueroa, the WBC champion, as I believe that could be an exiting fight. Fighting the other title holders in Miguel Vazquez or Richard April doesn’t interest me as they are boring to fight.
“I think I would make more money fighting anybody else other than fighting them for a title or not, but I can also go up to 140 to fight anybody up there too,” he added.
The rugged Mexican will be an interested spectator a Crawford and Gamboa trade blows at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha on Saturday, knowing his chance will come on a big Top Rank show at the end of the year.
Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay for tweets of upcoming news on WBN