BUATSI CLASHES WITH QUINLAN AT THE O2

Croydon star meets tough Aussia on Whyte vs. Chisora 2 undercard
Joshua Buatsi will defend his WBA International Light-Heavyweight title against Australia’s Renold Quinlan at The O2 in London on December 22, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and DAZN in the US.
 
Buatsi won the title in spectacular fashion when he destroyed Andrejs Pokumeiko inside one round at The O2 in July before blitzing Frenchman Tony Averlant in the opening round at the Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle in September. 
 
The 25-year-old Croydon star is hoping that former IBO Super-Middleweight Champion Quinlan will take him rounds. December 22 will be Quinlan’s second fight in the UK, he took Chris Eubank Jr. ten rounds when they clashed at the Olympia last year. 
 
“Renold Quinlan is a good solid fighter,” said Buatsi. “I’m hoping that he will give me the rounds that I need because my last two fights have gone early. He’s a very tough man and a proud Australian, he’ll be coming to fight. This isn’t about the title, it’s about getting the experience under my belt and pushing on.”
 
“I’ve seen bits of Buatsi and he’s nothing special,” said Quinlan. “He hasn’t fought anyone like me yet and I can’t wait to give him a great fight. I’m delighted to be returning to the UK on such a big card and I’ll be putting on a great performance for all my UK fans.”
 
Buatsi vs. Quinlan is part of a huge night of boxing in the capital.
 
Main event sees fierce Heavyweight rivals Dillian Whyte and Derek Chisora rematch after their Fight of the Year contender in December 2016.
 
Charlie Edwards gets a second shot at a World title when he challenges Cristofer Rosales for the WBC Flyweight World title, David Price and Tom Little meet in a must-win Heavyweight clash and British Featherweight Champion Ryan Walsh puts his Lonsdale belt on the line against Watford’s Reece Bellotti. 

Very limited tickets for Whyte vs. Chisora 2 are available to purchase from StubHub (www.stubhub.co.uk), The O2 (www.theo2.co.uk) and Matchroom Boxing (www.matchroomboxing.com)

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Taylor defends World titles against Wahlstrom in New York

Irish sensation faces unbeaten Finn and old amateur foe on Dec 15
Katie Taylor will defend her IBF and WBA World Lightweight titles against Eva Wahlstrom at Madison Square Garden, New York on December 15, on the undercard of Canelo Alvarez challenging Rocky Fielding for the WBA World Super Middleweight title, live on DAZN.

Taylor (11 – 0 5KOs) makes her third defense of her belts in her third fight in New York, first in the World famous Manhattan boxing mecca and the fourth stateside fight in her last seven fights.

The Irish sensation became the WBA World ruler in her seventh pro outing in Cardiff, Wales in October 2017 against Anahi Sanchez and unified the belts at the Barclays Center in fight number nine in the paid ranks, comfortably ripping the IBF belt from Victoria Bustos in April.

Taylor, an amateur star in the Emerald Isle with an Olympic gold medal added to five World championships and six European golds, is hunting unification bouts at 135lbs in 2019, but in unbeaten Finn Wahlstrom, the 32 year old faces the stiffest test of her pro career.

Wahlstrom (22 – 0 – 1 3KOs) is aiming to become a two-weight World champion in the Big Apple the long-reigning WBC Super-Featherweight champion steps up to Lightweight to achieve that goal on December 15.

The 38 year old landed her 130lbs strap in April 2015 and has been unmoved in four defenses on home turf, including a win over her common foe with Taylor, in former World champion Sanchez, who the Helsinki ace beat in December 2016.

The pair have history having clashed at the very start of Taylor’s amateur career 14 years ago, and the defending champion cannot think of a better setting to meet in the pros and continue her path to unification just over two years since the start of her pro career.

“Eva is someone I know very well from our time in the amateurs,” said Taylor. “I was actually drawn against her in my very first international competition back in 2004 and it seemed like every time I turned up to a major competition after that she was in the draw!

“She was always a really tough opponent so it’s no surprise that she’s gone on to have a great professional career. I think this fight will really showcase the best that women’s boxing has to offer and I’m really looking forward to it.

“I’ve been lucky enough to fight in some iconic venues since turning pro two years ago but I’m not sure there’s any more iconic in a boxing sense than Madison Square Garden. I think every fighter dreams about stepping in the ring there and I’m no different. To get the opportunity to defend my World titles there is really very exciting.”

“I have stated for a longest time that I am ready and I want to engage in toughest fights available,” said Wahlstrom. “This is the ultimate, biggest and toughest fight anywhere and to have it in the legendary Madison Square Garden is a huge honor.

“I lost to Katie few times in amateur days but I am sure I won her respect anyway. Now in a 10-round pro fight, it will be totally different game with all new avenues to avenge those defeats.

“I have the greatest respect to Katie for how she has remained her respectable, nice, down-to-earth personality despite all the success and fame. Thus, I am not going to do any trash-talking, but I am very ready to do some thrashing in the MSG ring.”

“This is an amazing opportunity for Katie to fight at MSG,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “This is by far the toughest fight of her career so far and hugely important moving into 2019.

“There will be great Irish support in New York and she adds even more superstar status to this brilliant night of boxing on DAZN.”

Canelo vs. Rocky is a 12-round fight for the WBA Super Middleweight World Title presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Matchroom Boxing. Lemieux vs. Johnson is a 12-round middleweight fight presented by Golden Boy Promotions and Eye of The Tiger Management. The event is sponsored by Tecate, “THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING,” and Hennessy “Never Stop. Never Settle.” The event will take place Saturday, December 15 at Madison Square Garden in New York City and will be streamed live on DAZN. 

Tickets for Canelo vs. Rocky are on sale and are priced at $1,000, $500, $300, $200, $150, $100, $75 and $50 plus applicable taxes, fees and services charges. Tickets can be purchased at the Madison Square Garden Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets, Ticketmaster charge by phone (866-858-0008) and online at  www.ticketmaster.comwww.goldenboytickets.com or www.MSG.com.

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ZERAFA: BROOK IS UNDERESTIMATING ME

Aussie vows to shock The Special One
Michael Zerafa has accused Kell Brook of overlooking him and says he’ll thrive off the underdog status when they clash at the FlyDSA Arena in Sheffield this Saturday, live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US. 

Zerafa, 26, is a former Commonwealth Super-Welterweight Champion and has secured 14 of his 25 wins via knockout. He has lost just two of his 27 professional fights, including a stoppage loss to former WBO Middleweight ruler Peter Quillin in 2015.

The Melbourne fighter admits that former IBF World Champion Brook is another step up in class but says he is ready for whatever the Sheffield star throws at him.

“I’m really up for this fight, I’m in the best condition of my life,” said Zerafa. “Halfway through the first round Brook and his team will realise they’ve underestimated me.

“I’ve got two losses on my record but that was years ago. I was a kid back then and very inexperienced. Now I’m a more complete fighter, more power, more speed & more boxing IQ.

“I respect Kell Brook, he’s a great fighter and he’s been at a higher level than me for longer, but that’s exactly why he’s looking past me. I’m going to make a lot of people eat their words. 

“This is the biggest opportunity of my career, I’m taking it with both hands and I’m definitely going to put on a show in Sheffield. I’m going into this fight with absolutely nothing to lose.”

Brook’s clash with Zerafa tops a huge night of boxing in the Steel City.

Unbeaten Irish star Jono Carroll faces French former European Champion Guillaume Frenois in a final eliminator to become mandatory challenger to IBF Super-Featherweight World Champion Tevin Farmer. 

Rising Welterweight star Josh Kelly steps up in class as he takes on former WBA World Champion David Avanesyan in his ninth professional contest. 

Explosive Liverpool Super-Welterweight Anthony Fowler is in title action as he targets a showdown with newly-crowned British Champion Ted Cheeseman in 2019 and IBF no.1 Featherweight contender Kid Galahad stays busy with an eye on the winner of Josh Warrington vs. Carl Frampton.

Sheffield is well represented on the undercard with Welterweight Anthony Tomlinson, Super-Middleweight Callum Hancock and Middleweight Shakiel Thompson all in action, while Leeds Super-Bantamweight Qais Ashfaq and Denaby Lightweight Terri Harper also feature. 

Tickets for Brook vs. Zerafa priced at £40, £60, £100 and £200 (Inner Ring VIP) are available to purchase via StubHub (www.stubhub.co.uk) FlyDSA Arena (www.flydsaarena.co.uk) and Matchroom Boxing (www.matchroomboxing.com)

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MURRAY: “I THINK PEOPLE WANT TO SEE ME RETIRE MORE THAN I DO! I AM A SURVIVOR!”


THE WELL USED label of ‘crossroads fight’ is one that is familiar to Martin Murray, more than most.

The particular piece of boxing terminology was again being bandied about in his direction when his potential barnstormer against Hassan N’Dam was announced for the Manchester Arena on December 22 in support of his stablemate, Carl Frampton, challenging for the IBF world featherweight title held by Josh Warrington.

Middleweight Murray now uses the mere mention of retirement as motivation to keep on winning. He is not having one last one for the road because the 36-year-old still firmly believes he has got a world title win in him.

However, if he were to lose another fight, he will call it quits and that has been the case since he suffered a points reverse to George Groves in June 2016.

“I know how important it is to win anyway, but I think people want to see me retire!” quipped the four-time world title challenger.

“The stakes are high and I think people do want to see me retire more than I do because it gets thrown in my face all the time.

“I’m a survivor. I’ve just been surviving and surviving and it always seems to be one loss and I will be retired. I’ve had that, well, since the Groves fight and I’ve not lost since.”

Despite being one loss away from collecting his punching pension, the force of Murray is showing no signs of diminishing and he demonstrated that he remains in the belt collecting business with the hard-fought victory over Roberto Garcia for the WBC Silver title last time out in June.

“I’m feeling great, you know, really good. I am one loss away from retirement, although I don’t want to retire, I know it is one loss away. So I am focusing, training hard and really enjoying the work at the minute.

“I keep getting the crossroads fight thing thrown at me by people. A really good mate of mine, a couple of months ago, said to me that after the Groves loss he never thought I would still be here.
“Everybody wrote me off after Groves, but I have just survived, scrapped and scraped – and I am still here.

“I am in a tough fight now, a meaningful fight and I am just focused on getting a win against a good live opponent.”
 
IBF world featherweight champion Josh Warrington takes on former two-weight world champion Carl Frampton at the Manchester Arena on December 22nd live on BT Sport Box Office. Mark Heffron and Liam Williams contest the vacant British middleweight title and Belfast’s blue chip featherweight prospect Michael Conlan (9-0) takes on former commonwealth champion Jason Cunningham (24-5). In a step up, Nathan Gorman puts his undefeated record and WBC International Silver Heavyweight Title on the line against former World Title challenger Alex Leapai. Tyson Fury’s younger brother Tommy Fury also makes his professional debut.

Elsewhere on the bill. World flyweight title challenger Paddy Barnes (5-1) and unbeaten Light Heavyweight contender Steven Ward (9-0) return to action. Manchester’s 12-0 Light Heavyweight Lyndon Arthur and 7-0 Darlington middleweight Troy Williamson also return.

Tickets are priced at £50 Upper Tier, £80 Tier, £100 Tier, £150 Tier, £200 Floor/Tier, £300 Floor, £400 Floor, £600 Inner Ring VIP Hospitality and are available.

Tickets available via Manchester Arena.

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