Shane Cameron up for another title shot
Battered Kiwi boxer Shane Cameron has vowed to fight on, believing he has another world title shot left in his career.
Cameron returned to Auckland last night, a day after suffering a unanimous points decision loss to Australian Danny Green, who won the Melbourne bout for the vacant IBO cruiserweight title and claimed his fourth world crown.
Cameron was hugely disappointed but tried to put things into perspective, believing he had come out of the defeat with respect - and a future.
"The desire is still there," the 35-year-old Cameron said, large sunglasses covering the six stitches to the two cuts to his forehead.
"I'll take a break through to Christmas. We've got look at where we go from here ... but the desire is still there to get a world title. I've got the age and experience to push on further."
Cameron acknowledged the clever tactics Green produced, fighting on the inside and constantly tying up Cameron, draining the power out of him.
"I guess it was a bit of a boring fight, it felt that way in the ring. A lot of holding and rabbit punching," Cameron said, frustrated that he had not been able to change the course of the fight.
While Green suffered damaged ribs, Cameron said he had emerged relatively unscathed. His troublesome hands were in good order.
Cameron said he would like to be active again by "around March" but was hesitant what weight division he would target for his next bout.
He admitted he felt more comfortable at his natural heavyweight rather than dropping down to the cruiserweight. The lure of a world title had been the carrot for him in this fight but he hinted that a return to the heavyweight ranks was on the cards.
"It's something Kenny [Reinsfield, his manager] and I have to discuss."
Reinsfield was necessarily upbeat as the post-mortem into the Kiwi's third career loss from 32 fights - and first without being stopped inside the distance - got under way.
Cameron's reputation took a battering when he was knocked out in the second round by David Tua in their heavyweight clash in 2009, but Reinsfield said Cameron's confidence did not require a similar makeover.
"It's not like a rebuilding. There's no disgrace in losing to Dan - he's got 28 knockouts. Shane went the distance with him. It was a good, honest, brutal fight. It was a competitive fight," he said, optimistic Cameron's appeal would not be diminished.
"What you got was a real fight. Shane doesn't run, he doesn't dodge shots, he gets in there and has a crack. Boxing fans will always turn up to watch Shane fight. He's only had three losses.
"It's disappointing but it's not the end of the world. Shane will go on from here, New Zealand's got to be proud of the man."
Reinsfield had no argument with the three judges calling the fight in Green's favour and credited the Australian for implementing a spoiling fight plan that successfully negated Cameron's jab and potentially lethal right hand.
He also echoed Cameron when insisting the demand set by Green that the Kiwi weigh-in at 89kg - 1.7kg lighter than the usual minimum for a cruiserweight - did not influence the outcome, although he did appear to labour over the final three rounds.
"I don't think that really affected the outcome. Shane was in great shape, he felt good . . . I just think Dan fought a smarter fight."
Cameron agreed when lamenting: "I felt all right but I just wasn't fast enough to fire the right hand away."
Reinsfield said he would have to dissect a replay of the fight with Cameron and trainer Henry Schuster before they decide whether to have another crack as a cruiserweight or step back up to his favoured heavyweight class.
"I think Shane could still fight in either division.
"Whether we go back to heavyweight, it's something we'll sit down as a team and look at it. It may well be where he should be fighting.
"We're tight [as a team]. I'm sure we'll carry on. We just have to take stock for a little while."