QUEENSBERRY PROMOTIONS STATEMENT ON BILLY JOE SAUNDERS


Queensberry Promotions are pleased to confirm that Billy Joe Saunders’ next fight will be against Shefat Isufi at Super Middleweight live on BT Sport.
 
With the widely reported changes in Billy Joe Saunders’ training situation and the current status of the WBO World Super Middleweight Title, this fight will not take place on April 13th at the SSE Arena, Wembley as was previously announced. The fight will be moved to a new date in May at a venue to be confirmed at a later date.
 
There will be an announcement on an exciting new London show for April featuring some of our best up and coming local talent this week and this will be followed up next with details on where and when Saunders v Isufi takes place.

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TAYLOR: THIS YEAR COULD BE MONUMENTAL

Irish sensation faces Rose Volante in unification clash in Philadelphia
Katie Taylor says she faces the first hurdle of a potentially “monumental” year as she meets Rose Volante in a World Lightweight unification clash at the Liacouras Center in Philadelphia, PA on Friday March 15, live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports in the UK.

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IBF and WBA ruler Taylor (12-0 5 KOs) looks to unify for a second time against the Brazilian WBO champion Volante (14-0 8 KOs) having added the IBF strap to her WBA belt in April in Brooklyn, New York beating Victoria Bustos and now places those belts on the line for the fourth time.

The Irish favorite can take a step closer to her goal of becoming the undisputed champion on St. Patrick’s weekend, with a summer showdown with WBC ruler Delfine Persoon on the cards to enable Taylor to own all four belts at 135lbs.

A clash with seven-weight World champion Amanda Serrano later in the year appeals to the 32 year old, as does a meeting with long-time undisputed Welterweight champion Cecilia Braekhus – with Taylor plotting a sensational 2019.

“This could be a monumental year for me, the biggest of my career both amateur and pro,” said Taylor. “I believe that by the end of the year I can look back at being the undisputed Lightweight champion and have had huge fights with Amanda and Cecilia. They want those fights as well, but I have to keep winning and everyone raises their game when they fight me.

“When I sat down with Eddie Hearn a few years ago and talked about turning pro, the one thing we talked about was to fight 3/4 times a year and he’s never let me down, I’m fighting regularly and they are great fights too. I have the chance to win my third World title belt inside two years as a pro, and I’d love to have four fights again this year, but Rose is the only fight in front of me.

“Rose is a great champion. She’s strong and has a big right hand, she’s undefeated too so she’s a proud fighter and she’s chasing the same prize as me. We want each other’s belts and unbeaten records, but I have had a great camp and I am full of confidence. I think I am getting better and i think it will show on the night. This could be a very physical fight and I am prepared for that.

“I’m at 135 now and I make the weight very comfortably. I could move up to 140lbs but 147? That could be a stretch but maybe I could make it; but anything past that I am not big enough for – so Welterweight would be my maximum. I couldn’t go down from 135, I love food too much!

“My speed is going to be key in these big fights and I think that technically I am better than a lot of the other girls as well. I feel I have a great team around me, the best coach in the world in Ross Enamait, I feel so prepared going into every fight. But each one is harder than the last and I am aware of that, but I have a lot of confidence and belief in myself, I really feel that no-one can beat me.”

Taylor’s clash with Volante is part of a massive night of action as local hero Tevin Farmer (28-4-1 6 KOs) defends his IBF World Super-Featherweight title against Ireland’s Jono Carroll (16-0-1 3 KOs).

Philadelphia Middleweight warrior Gabriel Rosado (24-11-1 14 KOs) faces Poland’s Maciej Sulecki (27-1 11 KOs) for the WBO International title and a likely World title shot at Demetrius Andrade, Philly Lightweight’s Hank Lundy (29-7-1 14 KOs) and Avery Sparrow (9-1 3 KOs) battle for local pride, Olympic gold medal pair Luke Campbell MBE (19-2 15 KOs) and Daniyar Yeleussinov (5-0 3 KOs) and silver medalist John Joe Nevin (11-0 4 KOs) taste their first action of 2019, unbeaten Super-Middleweight D’Mitrius Ballard (19-0 12 KOs) faces Victor Fonseca (17-9-1 14 KOs) while exciting New Jersey amateur star Raymond Ford makes his pro debut.

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MORENO: I WILL BE SPAIN’S NEXT WORLD CHAMPION

‘Golden Boy’ inspired by Garcia victory at The O2
Angel Moreno has vowed to follow in the footsteps of his compatriots Kiko Martinez and Gabriel Campillo by becoming Spain’s next World Champion when he clashes with Charlie Edwards for the WBC Flyweight crown at London’s Copper Box Arena on March 23, live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US. 

Spanish fighters have enjoyed recent success against Brits, with Bilbao’s Kerman Lejarraga blitzing Bradley Skeete in two rounds to claim the European Welterweight title before stopping Frankie Gavin in four rounds, and Torrelavega’s European Super-Welterweight champ Sergio Garcia outclassing Ted Cheeseman at The O2 last month.

Moreno, promoted by former Middleweight king Sergio Martinez, has only lost twice in a 23-fight career and has never been stopped. Hailing from Madrid, ‘Golden Boy’ has fought the majority of his career on home soil but insists he will not be intimidated by his former sparring partner’s home crowd.

“I am not going to London for a holiday,” said Moreno. “This is the opportunity of a lifetime for me. We know each other very well having sparred on two occasions in the past. We’ve shared many rounds together and I think he knows that I will be too strong for him on the night. If his team thinks that this fight will be an easy defence for Charlie, they are very wrong.
 
“I will follow the way of Sergio Garcia and Kerman Lejarraga. I’ve taken a lot of inspiration from my stablemate’s victory at The O2 last month and I’ll make Spain proud again when I lift the green belt above my head. Spanish boxing is in a very healthy position at the moment and it will be an honour to become my country’s next World Champion.
 
“I am not scared about the hostile atmosphere that will greet me in London. I have fought away from home in Ukraine and France, and I am a 36 years old man. I believe that my experience will show in the ring. I had plenty of notice for this fight and I’ve enjoyed the best and most productive training camp of my career. Do not be surprised when I beat Charlie.”

Edwards vs. Moreno tops a huge night of action at the Copper Box Arena. 

Rising Light-Heavyweight star Joshua Buatsi takes on former English Champion Liam Conroy for the vacant British title in his tenth fight. 

London Cruiserweight rivals Lawrence Okolie and Wadi Camacho collide with the British and Cruiserweight titles on the line. 

Geordie ace Lewis Ritson makes his debut at 140lbs as he takes on Argentina’s German Argentino Benitez for the WBA Inter-Continental title.

Undefeated Irish Middleweight talent Jason Quigley fights for the first time as a pro in the UK, Watford Bantamweight talent Shannon Courtenay makes her highly-anticipated professional debut and Newport Bantamweight talent Sean McGoldrick fights for the first time under new trainer Jamie Moore. 

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NO PLACE LIKE HOME FOR BOWEN


SAM BOWEN IS relishing a second shot at top billing in his home county when boxing returns to the Morningside Arena in Leicester on March 23, but just don’t expect him to show it until the fight has been called to a halt.

British super featherweight champion Bowen, who signed up with Frank Warren and promptly won the WBO Intercontinental title in October against Horacio Alfredo Cabral in October, is looking forward to bolstering his ever-increasing credentials on BT Sport, but won’t allow himself to get carried away with occasion.

The 26-year-old makes a first defence of his Lonsdale belt against the Scottish champion Jordan McCorry.

“I sort of block out how big the event is for me and literally just concentrate on the fight,” said Bowen, who was originally set to defend his title against Ronnie Clark before the Dundee man withdrew due to injury. “It could be in front of a million people or ten people and I treat it the same because if you treat it differently it can affect your mental state and you could get overwhelmed.

“That is the last thing I want to do and then mess up and get caught with a silly shot.

“I took it all in more once I had won against Cabral and you could see from my reaction that I was buzzing. Once it was done I could take it all in and that is when I thought ‘this is mega’ and when I had the interview after it made me realise what a step up it was from when I won the British, which was not on a TV and not in a big venue like that.

“So that is when I really took note of it all, where before I just treat every fight the same. That is how I deal with it and it is how I feel I get the results I need to progress.”

The Argentinean Cabral proved a tough nut to crack for the 14-0 Ibstock man known as ‘Bullet’. The more Bowen fired to the head, the more his opponent seemed to enjoy it.

“Yeah he was a fruitcake! I tried not to get drawn into his game because when I missed with one shot he looked where my hand went, to take the mick sort of thing.

“I needed to keep to my gameplan and not let him disrupt me. You’ve seen good fighters get hit at any level and get knocked out, so I had to concentrate on the fight. After the first round I toned it down a bit because I was a bit rushed and I enjoyed it myself too much.

“I said to Carl (trainer, Greaves) in the corner that if he wanted to do this for ten rounds then it would be a nice enjoyable win for me. I know my fitness is bob-on and I was winning the rounds comfortably.”

The game-changer came in the fourth round in an unorthodox fashion when Bowen mixed up his attack and propelled himself into winging left hook to the body. It was game over.

“I sort of throw it without even realising. You don’t plan every shot and it happened so fast and then he was rolling around on the floor.

“It was a good shot and I do land well with a left hook to the body. I’m happy it worked for me then.”

The Leicester contingent is a growing band of boxers who are all determined to make the Morningside Arena a regular fixture on the fight calendar.

As well as Bowen, Lyon Woodstock is bidding to get back on track after a first career defeat to Archie Sharp last time out, while local lads CJ Challenger and Kyle Haywood meet with the vacant Midlands Area super welterweight title at stake.

“If there was only one fighter in Leicester it wouldn’t be so exciting, so it is good to have a few of us to make it happen,” reasoned Bowen.

“My last one in October and this one in March will be two big shows in Leicester and it is great for our families and friends that we are able to box here and not have to travel to other places.

“A mate of mine has been sorting the tickets out at work and they are going mad for it because it is in Leicester – a lot more so this time than last because they saw it on TV and want to come now.”
 
British super featherweight champion Sam Bowen defending his title against Jordan McCorry headlines at the Morningside Arena in Leicester. Also on the bill, super lightweight Sam Maxwell bids for his first title against the Spaniard Kelvin Dotel with the WBO European belt at stake, while local fighters CJ Challenger and Kyle Haywood are set to battle for the vacant Midlands Area super welterweight title. Nathan Gorman defends his WBC International Silver heavyweight title against the 26-1 Brazilian Fabio Maldonado, with Lyon Woodstock, Willie Hutchinson, Tommy Fury, Ryan Hatton and Mark Chamberlain also featuring on the card.

Tickets are available from £40 are on sale NOW via Eventbrite
 

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CAMPBELL TO LET WORLD TITLE ‘FRUSTRATIONS’ OUT IN PHILLY

Olympic Gold medal hero waiting for WBC Lightweight shot
Luke Campbell MBE has itchy knuckles and is ready to take his frustrations out at the Liacouras Center in Philadelphia on Friday (March 15) live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports in the UK as he waits for his shot at the WBC World Lightweight.

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Campbell (19-2 15 KOs) is ranked #1 in the WBC and landed the mandatory slot for the World title when he exacted revenge over Yvan Mendy at Wembley Stadium, London in September.

WBC ruler Mikey Garcia has stepped up to Welterweight to face Errol Spence this weekend, leaving Campbell unsure of the Californian star’s plans following his bout in Dallas, Texas, but doubts he will move back down to 135lbs after facing Spence.

The London 2012 Olympic Gold medal star was superb in his first World title clash, being edged out via split decision against then-WBA and WBC Diamond king Jorge Linares in September 2017 in Los Angeles – with Campbell pushing the Venezuelan close after losing his father in the build-up to the fight.

The Hull favorite boxes in the States for the third time in the paid ranks and his second fight with trainer Shane McGuigan, and the 31 year old believes it’s only a matter of time until he fulfils his World title dreams.

“I cannot sit around and wait without fighting, I’m hungry, I want to be the best and fulfil my dream of becoming a World champion,” said Campbell, who faces Adrian Young (26-5-2 20 KOs) over ten rounds in Philadelphia.

“I’ve been training – that’s all I do. I haven’t been seen for a while but that’s where I have been. We’re waiting to hear what’s happening with the WBC – it’s frustrating not knowing what is happening but it’s Mikey’s decision, there’s nothing I can do. I have to take things into my own hands and stay busy, which is what Philadelphia is about, before we see what is next.

“I don’t think that Mikey can go to 147lbs, put muscle on and be big at Welterweight, and then come back down to Lightweight – it’s not doable on the body. Maybe they will make him champion in recess and if that’s the case the title will be open for me to fight for.

“I don’t have a lot of miles on the clock, I live the life, I’m very dedicated and I want to be the best, that’s driving me. Everything in my life is planned around boxing, not the other way around, so I will not stop until I achieve what I want.

“I would love a rematch with Jorge. If i could face him I know I would beat him, and that would clean my record. I’d love to right that wrong, it was a very close fight, he nicked it on his show in his backyard.

“Things are going great with Shane. I can see my family every week and that makes a massive difference, I do this for my family and they are the water that feeds my flower.

“Shane is raising my game in every department, I think that I am already becoming a much better fighter and I believe that these next few years will be the best of my career. When you have a head for boxing and you can see and read the sport, it doesn’t matter what age you are. He’s had more experience than a lot of other coaches at World level and he’s successful, he’s very professional in what he does and in the first time in my career I feel I’m learning the professional side of the sport.

“Barry McGuigan is around a lot too and it’s great, he’s very passionate, has lots of stories and when you are sparring and you catch his eye and he gives you the thumbs up or a little wink, it spurs you on.”

Campbell’s clash with Young is part of a huge night of action in Philadelphia on St Patrick’s weekend topped by a World title double-header as Philly’s Tevin Farmer (28-4-1 6 KOs) comes home to defend his IBF Super-Featherweight title against Ireland’s Jono Carroll (16-0-1 3 KOs), and Irish sensation Katie Taylor (12-0 5 KOs) looks to unify the Lightweight division once again, putting her IBF and WBA straps on the line against Brazil’s WBO champion Rose Volante (14-0 8 KOs).

Philadelphia Middleweight warrior Gabriel Rosado (24-11-1 14 KOs) faces Poland’s Maciej Sulecki (27-1 11 KOs) for the WBO International title and a likely World title shot at Demetrius Andrade, Philly Lightweight’s Hank Lundy (29-7-1 14 KOs) and Avery Sparrow (9-1 3 KOs) battle for local pride, Olympic Gold medal man Daniyar Yeleussinov (5-0 3 KOs) and Silver medalist John Joe Nevin (11-0 4 KOs) taste their first action of 2019, unbeaten Super-Middleweight D’Mitrius Ballard (19-0 12 KOs) faces Victor Fonseca (17-9-1 14 KOs) while exciting New Jersey amateur star Raymond Ford makes his pro debut.

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JASON QUIGLEY ADDED TO COPPER BOX ARENA SHOW

Irish Middleweight talent makes UK debut
Undefeated Middleweight talent Jason Quigley has been added to the undercard of Charlie Edward’s maiden WBC Flyweight World title defence against Angel Moreno at London’s Copper Box Arena on March 23, screened live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US. 

The Dominic Ingle-trained fighter, based in Sheffield, makes his first appearance in the UK as a professional on a stacked card that features former Olympians Joshua Buatsi and Lawrence Okolie in title action, as well as the return of Newcastle powerhouse Lewis Ritson. 

A highly-touted former Irish amateur star, Quigley holds a perfect record of 15 wins from 15 fights, with 11 of those wins coming by knockout, since turning over in 2014 and is expected to do big things in the pro game.
 
From County Donegal, Quigley, the current NABF Middleweight Champion, is delighted to be fighting so close to home after basing himself in America for the early part of his pro career.

“I’m excited to make my UK debut in London,” said Quigley. “I know my fans at home are going to be thrilled that they have a short distance to travel for this one. It’s great to get a chance to fight in London and fight so close to home for me. I’m very grateful to Golden Boy Promotions and Matchroom Boxing for working together to give me the chance to fight on this show.”
 
Quigley features on a huge night of boxing at the Copper Box Arena.

Main event sees Croydon’s Charlie Edwards make the first defence of his WBC Flyweight World title against Spain’s Angel Moreno

Rising Light-Heavyweight star Joshua Buatsi takes on former English Champion Liam Conroy for the vacant British title in his tenth fight. 

London Cruiserweight rivals Lawrence Okolie and Wadi Camacho collide with the British and Cruiserweight titles on the line. 

Geordie ace Lewis Ritson makes his debut at 140lbs as he takes on Argentina’s 
German Argentino Benitez for the WBA Inter-Continental title.

Watford Bantamweight talent Shannon Courtenay makes her highly-anticipated professional debut and Newport Bantamweight talent Sean McGoldrick fights for the first time under new trainer Jamie Moore. 

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RITSON MOVES UP TO SUPER-LIGHTWEIGHT

‘Sandman’ begins assault on 140lbs division at Copper Box Arena
Lewis Ritson has moved up in weight to the Super-Lightweight division and will make his debut at 140lbs when he takes on Argentina’s German Argentino Benitez for the WBA Inter-Continental title at the Copper Box Arena on March 23, live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US.
 
Ritson ripped the British Lightweight title from Robbie Barrett in seven rounds before making a series of devastating quickfire defences against Joe Murray, Scott Cardle and Paul Hyland Jnr to win the famous belt outright.
 
The 25-year-old Geordie ace makes the jump up to 140lbs after tasting defeat for the first time when he was outpointed by Franceso Patera in a battle for the European Lightweight crown at the Metro Radio Arena in October. 
 
With an extra 5lbs to play with, the ‘Sandman’ is confident he will be even more destructive at his new weight and is itching to begin his assault on the Super-Lightweight division in London next week.
 
“Now is the right time to move up to 140lbs,” said Ritson. “I probably should have moved up in weight a while ago but I was determined to test myself on the European scene which is why I carried on. There’s no excuses from me though about the last fight.”
 
“I’ve watched the Patera fight back once and I won’t be doing so again. It was a terrible performance and some of the mistakes I made on the night are inexcusable, but you live and learn.
 
“Fanno (coach Neil Fannon) said if I don’t get him out of there in the first half of the fight it would be a hard night’s work but I went in there with the mentality of just blasting him away early, like I had done to the previous couple of opponents which was wrong. It’s opened my eyes and we’ve been working on my all round game since.
 
“You’ll see a different Lewis Ritson with the extra 5lbs to play with. The power will be more telling, we were surprised boiling down to make 135lbs I was getting good kids out of there in that fashion. But that shows I have natural power, which will only show with the extra weight.
 
“To be fighting for the WBA Inter-Continental title opens some doors right away with a win. I didn’t want to be fighting in a six or eight rounder just to feel in to the new weight, or fighting at Commonwealth or British level. That’s no disrespect to the lads up in this weight, but I’ve got the British title on my Dad’s mantlepiece so I don’t really want to be going over old ground.
 
“I’m a million miles away from a World title at the minute, but will be keeping an eye on the Hughes vs. Davies Jnr fight. The European title is something I failed to win, so I would be open to fighting for it down the line if it made sense for all parties. 
 
“Generally, it’s a really open division – I’ve sparred WBA World Champion Kiryl Relikh before and after seeing Maurice Hooker’s last performance I wouldn’t shy away from those if they cropped up down the line. A couple of wins and I could be in the frame which sets me up for a really exciting year.”

Ritson vs. Benitez is part of a huge night of action at the Copper Box Arena. 

Main event sees Croydon’s Charlie Edwards make the first defence of his WBC Flyweight World title against Spain’s Angel Moreno

Rising Light-Heavyweight star Joshua Buatsi takes on former English Champion Liam Conroy for the vacant British title in his tenth fight. 

London Cruiserweight rivals Lawrence Okolie and Wadi Camacho collide with the British and Cruiserweight titles on the line. 

Watford Bantamweight talent Shannon Courtenay makes her highly-anticipated professional debut and Newport Bantamweight talent Sean McGoldrick fights for the first time under new trainer Jamie Moore. 
 

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SEBASTIAN EUBANK TO APPEAR ON THIS SATURDAY’S VIP OLDHAM SHOW


Boxing fans will get the chance to watch one of the siblings from the famous Eubank fighting family, live and free on Saturday March 16, when Sebastian Eubank appears on VIP Promotions’ Oldham show.

Sebastian – brother of Chris Eubank Jr and son of boxing legend Chris Eubank Sr – has his second pro outing on the card, which is topped by Salford’s March Leach and sees the return of Oldham’s Mark Heffron, with all the action streamed on vipboxing.tv

Light-heavyweight Eubank is trained by fellow Brighton man, and former WBO World Heavyweight Title challenger, Scott Welch.  The pair have worked together for a number of years now and, with his huge wealth of experience and knowledge in the game, Scott is adamant that Seb is a genuine star in the making.

“On and off, we’ve been with Seb all the way through the amateurs,” explained former British heavyweight champion Welch.  “He lost to the same guy – a top England boy – in the quarter finals of the ABAs and the Haringey Cup.  He got pipped to the post, there was nothing in it, but it didn’t go our way, and after that he decided not to go pro.  He’s now got everything in place in his life and wants another crack at it.  

“He made his pro debut on the undercard when his brother [Chris Eubank Jr] fought George Groves [February 2018].  He’s back now in full training and is currently out sparring Lawrence Okolie in Monaco, before this show on Saturday.

“He’s like his brother.  He’s very serious and can punch.  He was a known, deadly puncher in the amateurs.  He’s a serious contender.  He wants to get the job done emphatically, and he’ll be calling out the big names as we go.  I don’t think he’s worried about [Anthony] Yarde or [Joshua] Buatsi or any of them, once he gets going.  Obviously, it’s all talking at the moment, but he’s definitely going to be a man to be reckoned with.  You’ll see as he goes along.  He just needs to be active and busy.  By the end of the year we want to be looking at 10 fights.

“He can absolutely go on to emulate the successes of his dad and brother.  He does everything right, he’s a true professional and when you see him you’ll understand what I’m talking about.  If you want to see a definite star in the making, then come along to this show in Oldham and you’ll see exactly what we’re talking about.”

“This Oldham card is a really good show,” said promoter, Steve Wood.  “Marc Leach, who is trained by Jamie Moore, is topping the bill, and we also have the likes of Mark Heffron returning after his recent British Title loss to Liam Williams.  Throw in the mix, Seb Eubank too, and it’s a show not be missed.  If you can’t get along to the show, tune into vipboxing.tv and catch all the action, live and completely free.”

VIP Promotions present an evening of boxing at the Oldham Leisure Centre (Sat Nav OL9 6EJ) on Saturday March 16.   Headlining will be Salford’s Marc Leach and appearing on the undercard will be Oldham’s Mark Heffron and Jack Kilgannon; Manchester’s Jake James, Kane Gardner and Aqib Fiaz; and Brighton’s Seb Eubank.

Tickets priced at £35 (general) and £60 (ringside) are available from all boxers, or at vipboxing.tv  

The show will also be streamed live and free at vipboxing.tv

Keep updated on VIP Promotions’ news by visiting vipboxing.tv or follow on Twitter @vipboxing and Facebook.  Subscribe to the VIP YouTube channel to get notifications about the latest videos.

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VIP ANNOUNCE DEAL TO SHOWCASE AFRICA’S TOP BOXING TALENT LIVE AND FREE IN THE UK


In an exciting development for UK fights fans, VIP Promotions have announced they will be showcasing some of Africa’s best boxing talent live and free on vipboxing.tv

One of the Britain’s biggest boxing promoters, with some of the UK’s best fighters already part of the stable – including World Featherweight Champion Josh Warrington – VIP have teamed up Kalakoda Promotions and will stream a live African show every last Friday of the month.  The first show will debut on March 29 and is topped by hard-hitting unbeaten light-middleweight, Emile Kalekuzi, 14-0 (10).

The promotional outfits already have a healthy relationship after agreeing last year to host a ‘home and away’, twice-yearly, ‘UK versus Africa’ show – which has already proved to be a great success.  

Now, with the announcement their shows will be broadcast to a UK audience, the head of South Africa’s Kalakoda says British fight fans will be the winners as they get the chance to experience African boxing at its best. 

“We already have one of the world’s biggest boxing audiences,” explained Saul Loggenberg, Chief Executive of Kalakoda Promotions.  “Our reach is 300 million viewers and our viewer numbers are between 50-120 million, across 38 Sub-Saharan African countries.

“But having a UK audience will also allow us to showcase some of the best African talent and hopefully allow these fighters the chance to build a new following abroad and ultimately the chance to fight in the UK.

“Obviously the UK is used to watching boxing, but the biggest differences they will notice will be in the matching because we don’t have a culture of using journeymen to build fighters.  So, although there will always be knock outs, there should be more 50-50 fights.  

“I think the knowledgeable UK audience will appreciate the raw talent, as well as be pleasantly surprised at the quality on show because, as I’ve always maintained, I feel African fighters get a raw deal in terms of ratings.

“It’s fantastic to continue to build our relationship with VIP Promotions.  I sincerely hope that as we continue to work together internationally, we will build opportunities for fighters and additional chances to collaborate as we have done previously with great success.”

Head of VIP Promotions, Steve Wood, said: “Our Vipboxing.tv channel, which broadcasts our UK shows live and completely free, already has a huge reach, and is doing great numbers.  So, I’m really excited about this new development.  I know how good these African shows are, the fights are of the highest quality, and I’m sure British boxing fans will get behind this new initiative, pick their favourite African fighter, and follow his or her journey on our channel.”

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ALLEN-BROWNE/CHISORA-GASHI HEAVYWEIGHT DOUBLE-HEADER LANDS AT THE O2

Rising talents Kelly, Cordina and Benn star on April 20 card
Dave Allen faces the biggest night of his career when he takes on former WBA World Champion Lucas Browne on a huge evening of Heavyweight action at The O2 in London on April 20, shown live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US, that sees Finchley bad boy Derek Chisora return to the ring against Senad Gashi after his FOTY contender with Dillian Whyte in December.
 
‘White Rhino’ is in the form of his life after notching successive stoppage wins over Nick Webb, Samir Nebo and Ariel Esteban Bracamonte in the second half of 2018. The Doncaster fans’ favourite rich vein of form began with a “life-changing” fourth round knockout win against Webb at The O2 in July and he hopes to make it three KO’s from three fights at the Greenwich venue next month.
 
Browne returns to the scene of his sole career loss to Dillian Whyte determined to redeem himself with a big knockout win over cult hero Allen. Since that loss the 28-1 Australian, who’s career-best win came against Ruslan Chagaev in 2016, has bounced back with three wins and he believes another victory on April 20 will fire his name back into the World mix.

“I have never trained so hard in my life,” said Allen. “I’m going to knock Browne spark out, I hit too hard for him. Even though there’s no animosity in the build-up, I want to punch him all over The O2 in to row Z.
 
“Lucas Browne isn’t the Lucas Browne who beat Chagaev, he’s a faded force. That being said he’s still very dangerous, he does have that power, but this fight is perfect for me. He’s a former World Heavyweight Champion. A win here puts me on the big stage, not the highest level, but within touching distance of a fight that would then put me there.
 
“To be at the top of the bill at The O2 means loads, the support is something special. I’m unbeaten at The O2 with two huge knockouts and I’m very confident in making it a treble.”
 
 “I’m eager to redeem myself at The O2 and will be coming for a knockout,” said Browne. “I’m a fan of Dave, I have nothing bad to say about him and I’m looking forward to a good old-fashioned brawl on April 20. This is the fight for me to showcase who and what I am to the masses. It’s a blockbuster fight and I know Dave is a big crowd favourite but that will drive me on to silence the fans.
 
“I’m at the stage in my career where I need to be 100% serious, I’m getting too old to play around. The loss to Whyte was the kick in the butt that I needed and since then I’ve changed my promoter, team, training and general approach to boxing.”
 
Former World title challenger Chisora came sensationally close to beating Whyte in December. Going into the eleventh round of an exhilarating and brutal fight, Chisora was ahead on two of the judges’ scorecards only to be caught by a devastating left hook. 

Having recently teamed up with highly-respected trainer Dave Coldwell, Chisora is feeling refreshed, revitalised and ready to take on any challenges in 2019.
 
“Six weeks ‘til I go back to WAR and boy I can’t wait!” said Chisora. “On Saturday 20th April I will be stepping into the ring at The O2 with fire in my soul, I have a point to prove and mission to continue!
 
“Parker b*tched out, he must have taken too many laxatives and sh*t himself. He wasn’t ready for the battle, he reckons he needed more time. Gashi has shown he is a true fighter, he is always ready to go to war when called. He showed this in December when he stepped in the ring with Takam on just one week’s notice and gave him a real fight. I’m not stupid, I know with six weeks’ notice in April Gashi will be a different animal.  
 
“He is a wild horse, a loose cannon, he is coming to win but trust me, he won’t hear the final bell. I’m ready, we’ve stepped things up a gear working hard with Dave Coldwell. April 20th WAR Chisora will be back in London to show the Heavyweight division exactly why retirement wasn’t an option.”

Some of the best up-and-coming talent Britain has to offer get the chance to showcase their skills to the masses once again as Sunderland’s ‘Pretty Boy’ Josh Kelly takes on the toughest opponent of his career to date in the form of unbeaten 17-0 Pole Przemyslaw Runowski.
 
Cardiff’s ‘Welsh Wizard’ Joe Cordina picked up the Commonwealth Lightweight crown in his last outing against Sean Dodd and he steps up again on April 20 to take on Barnsley ‘KO Kid’ Andy Townend for the vacant Lord Lonsdale belt. 
 
Ilford Welterweight Conor Benn makes his long-awaited return to the ring following a hand injury that kept him out of action since his first title win over Cedrick Peynaud in July, and ‘The Destroyer’ in promising another explosive performance as he looks to pick up where he left off. 
 
“Runowski’s a solid opponent, unbeaten for a reason,” said Kelly. “They breed them tough in Eastern Europe but I’m ready to dismantle him and put on a show for everyone in the crowd and watching at home. It excites me every time I step through the ropes. This year is going to be massive if everything goes to plan. I’ve got to keep my feet firmly on the ground, continue to work and get the results.”
 
“I’m excited to be back at The O2 for this big Heavyweight double-header,” said Eddie Hearn. “Dave Allen has become a cult hero over the last year but this time he is in deep against former WBA World Champion Lucas Browne. Browne, who lost to Dillian Whyte at the same venue just under a year ago, has bounced back with three wins since and is looking for a shot at one of the big boys. For Dave, this is a dream chance to catapult himself into the big time in a vibrant Heavyweight market.
 
“Chisora returns after his FOTY contender with Dillian Whyte in December against the tough Senad Gashi. Gashi went to war with Takam in December on less than a week’s notice and this time he will be fully prepared in what I believe will be a very tough fight. One of the world’s biggest young talents Josh Kelly defends his WBA title against unbeaten Pole Przemyslaw Runowski and fellow Olympian Joe Cordina will challenge Andy Townend for the vacant British Lightweight title. Unbeaten 147lb star Conor Benn also returns to action following a hand injury as he hunts major domestic titles in 2019.”
 
David Haye of Hayemaker Promotions said: “On Saturday 20th April Hayemaker Promotions are excited to be back at The O2, the home of British Boxing. Once again working in partnership with Matchroom Boxing, we are looking forward to bringing fight fans an electric night of boxing with showreel knockout endings!
 
“Derek ‘WAR’ Chisora will be back, on a mission to show the fans exactly what he has in his armoury under new Head Trainer Dave Coldwell. Former WBA World Champion Lucas Browne is set to go toe-to-toe with Dave ‘White Rhino’ Allen and future World Welterweight Champion Josh Kelly is also ready to set the ring alight.”

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