ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey – Now that Sena Agbeko has upset an undefeated prospect in a televised main event, the veteran super middleweight wants to settle a score against a former 168-pound champion.
The Ghanian-born, Nashville-based boxer called out former sparring partner Caleb Plant in the immediate aftermath of his 10-round, unanimous-decision victory over Isaiah Steen on Friday night at Bally’s Grand Ballroom. Agbeko believes their fight would draw a lot of attention in Nashville, where they sparred many times before Plant relocated to Las Vegas and eventually developed into a world champion.
“I want Caleb Plant,” Agbeko told BoxingScene.com. “Caleb Plant and I have a long history in Nashville, Tennessee. Nobody knows about it, but me and him have sparred countless times. We sparred literally three times every week for two years. I helped him from his third pro fight until his 15th pro fight. And him and his [former] coach [Justin Gamber] tried to throw me under the bus. And they left me. They went to Vegas and they left me for dead. You understand? They screwed me over.
“I want him. I’m in his head. He knows I’m in his head. The people of Nashville know our story. If and when he decides to fight me, trust me, we will fill up the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. I want Caleb Plant. He just had a great knockout against Anthony Dirrell. I want Caleb Plant.”
Plant produced the most spectacular knockout of his career October 15, when his left hook knocked former WBC champ Anthony Dirrell unconscious late in the ninth round on the Deontay Wilder-Robert Helenius undercard at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Agbeko’s win wasn’t as eye-catching, but the 30-year-old contender changed the course of his career by beating Cleveland’s Steen (16-1, 12 KOs) in a fight Agbeko took on barely two weeks’ notice.
The 30-year-old Plant’s accomplishments obviously would make him a favorite over Agbeko (27-2, 21 KOs), but the confident Agbeko firmly feels he is better than the Ashland City, Tennessee native.
“We sparred every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday,” Agbeko recalled. “He thanked me in one press release. And then, in another interview, he threw me under the bus by saying that the sparring in Nashville wasn’t good enough. Meanwhile, every time we sparred, he couldn’t go past four rounds with me. I was wearing him into the ground.
“There were numerous times I had forced the coach to stop the sparring. There was one time I dropped him in sparring. So, we have a long history. He knows me very well. I’m in his head. The people of Nashville know the story very well. So, I want him to fight me at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. Let’s settle the score, because I feel they have wronged me. We need to set things straight.”
Agbeko has won four consecutive fights since unbeaten Russian contender Vladimir Shishkin (13-0, 8 KOs) defeated him by unanimous decision in a 10-rounder in February 2021 at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. Agbeko’s bouts with Shishkin and Steen headlined “ShoBox: The New Generation” tripleheaders on Showtime.
Plant, of course, has fought at the highest level. Mexican superstar Canelo Alvarez stopped Plant (22-1, 13 KOs) in the 11th round of their full title unification fight, which Showtime distributed as a pay-per-view main event last November 6 from MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
“Caleb, I respect him as a fighter,” Agbeko said. “I think he’s a very skillful fighter. I think he has amazing skills, but I’m just in his head and I’m better than him. I just want that opportunity to prove it against him in Nashville.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.