by Lem Satterfield
New Jersey junior middleweight contender Pawel Wolak wants to be in the mix for a world title, and the 29-year-old is targeting IBF king Cornelius Bundrage.
But first, Wolak (29-1, 19 knockouts) must get beyond a July 15 clash opposite Dominican Republic-born Delvin Rodriguez (25-5-2, 14 KO) of Danbury, Conn.
"Pawel Wolak wants Cornelius Bundrage next, provided the Delvin Rodriguez fight goes as expected," said Wolak's manager, Ivan Edwards. "Pawel would most certainly like to meet Bundrage as soon as possible."
The 38-year-old Bundrage (31-4, 18 KOs) is coming off of Saturday's unanimous decision over 32-year-old Sechew Powell (26-3, 15 KOs), which avenged a first-round knockout loss that was suffered in May of 2005.
"Cornelius did his job on Saturday. Quite frankly, he did better than I anticipated. He demonstrated that he has true grit and that he has the belt and that he wants to hold to it," said Edwards.
"That's why I believe that Wolak versus Bundrage would be fireworks," said Edwards. "But with that said, being that Delvin Rodriguez is first and foremost, we already face a tall task."
Against Rodriguez, Wolak will pursue his ninth straight win, his third consecutive knockout and his sixth stoppage during that run when the pair faces off at the Roseland Ballroom in New York.
Beyond Bundrage, Wolak wants to be thrown into consideration for match ups against southpaw WBO titlist Sergei Dzinziruk (37-1, 23 KOs), WBC champ Saul Alvarez (37-0-1, 27 KOs), WBA super world titlist Miguel Cotto (36-2, 29 KOs) or even southpaw WBA regular belt-holder Austin Trout (23-0, 13 KOs).
"Delvin Rodrigues is a a good solid fighter. He is obviously a warrior," said Edwards. "But Pawel Wolak is training harder that ever and he's prepared for war. And right now Wolak wants a crack at someones belt, and Rodriguez is in the way."