Daniel Geale spoke to the Sydney Morning Herald about why he has chosen to take a soft first title defense at home in Tasmania, and some of the offers he could have taken instead:
[T]he proud Tasmanian wanted to honour a promise he had made a long time ago to fight a world title bout in Hobart to allow those who had supported his rise from amateur hotshot to kingpin and savour his success.
... "The feedback I've received so far about having the fight in Tasmania is that it means a lot to the people, and that's awesome," Geale said.
''We're probably not making as much money as we could by taking the fight down to Tasmania, but a lot of people respect that and I've received plenty of compliments - and heaps of thanks - for remembering good old Tassie because the truth is it misses a few [events] down there."
Geale (25-1, 15 KO) won the IBF middleweight title on May 7 in Germany against Sebastian Sylvester, and has chosen to make his first defense at home against Eromosele Albert (24-4-1, 12 KO) on August 31. It's a fight we've criticized because Albert, 37, is not near the top of the middleweight division. But it is easy to understand, and it's not an unusual path. Orlando Salido recently did the same thing in Mexico, for instance.
Geale says he could have fought Felix Sturm, Gennady Golovkin or even legit world champion Sergio Martinez, but those fights will still be there in 2012, too. Whether any of them happen is another story, but Martinez has been willing to fight legitimate but lesser-known (in the U.S.) opponents lately, and Golovkin seems to be dying for a chance to take bigger fights. Sturm, well, who knows with Sturm?