FOWLER V ROSE TOPS JD NXTGEN SHOW IN LIVERPOOL

Ritson v Hughes, Cullen v Harding Jr & Bakole v Perea land on August 2 bill
Anthony Fowler will headline his first ever show in his hometown at the Exhibition Centre Liverpool on Friday August 2 when he steps-up to take on former World title challenger Brian Rose on the latest instalment if the JD NXTGEN series, shown live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US. 
 
Fowler (9-1, 8 KOs) lands a golden opportunity to bounce back from a first career defeat at the hands of Preston rival Scott Fitzgerald and ‘The Machine’ knows that nothing less than a win will suffice as he aims to climb the 154lbs ladder.  
 
Rose (31-5-1, 8 KOs) believes his superior experience will prove to be the difference on the night and ‘The Lion’, a former British champion, is determined to fire his name back into the mix one last time before he hangs up his gloves for good. 

“I want tests and I want to be involved in the big fights,” said Fowler. “To be headlining a show in Liverpool is a great honour. I’m not in this game to be taking easy fights. Brian has mixed it at the top level throughout his career and this is a fantastic chance for me to test myself against an experienced opponent.

“I learnt a lot from my last fight and we went away and improved in a few areas. I know that I’m in for a tough night’s work but this is a fight that I feel ready and prepared for. Brian is a known name and I think he’ll get the best out of me on the night. This is strictly business and I’m ready to do the business in what is a must-win fight for me.”

“I think he’s a good fighter but he’s certainly not ready for me,” said Rose. “I’m more experienced than him and I can do 12 rounds standing on my head. It’s a mismatch. 18 months out of the ring gave me time to think about what I wanted and I feel like I’ve got so much left in the tank to give. 

“If he doesn’t win this fight where does he go? He’s lost to someone that’s young and a prospect, and now he’s fighting me who people think is over the hill. He’ll have lost to a prospect and a veteran. The pressure is all on him and he has to pull out the stops. 

“I sparred with him a few years ago and I get on with him but quite recently he’s slagged me off on social media. It’s left a bad taste in my mouth but I’ll deal with that on the night. For me this comeback isn’t about money, it’s not even about achievement, it’s about knowing I’ve got something left to give the sport that I’ve served for so long.”

Forest Hall banger Lewis Ritson (18-1, 11 KOs) makes his second appearance at 140lbs as he takes on former European champion Joe Hughes (17-4-1, 7 KOs) in a tasty showdown for the WBA Continental title that could lead to a shot at Liverpool’s Robbie Davies Jr. later in the year. 

Davies Jr. (18-1, 12 KOs) outpointed Hughes at the M&S Bank Arena Liverpool to claim the EBU European crown back in April and keeps busy on August 2 knowing that a clash with ‘The Sandman’ could be next.

Bolton’s English Middleweight champion Jack Cullen (16-1, 7 KOs) makes the first defence of his title against Dillian Whyte-managed Brixton man John Harding Jr (7-0-1, 1 KO) after his Commonwealth title shot against Felix Cash was shelved due to an injury to the champion. 
 
Martin Bakole (12-1, 9 KOs) returns to take on Ecuador’s Ytalo Perea (11-4-2, 7 KOs) after defeating former World title challenger Mariusz Wach in April, stopping the Pole in eight rounds in his first fight since a loss to Heavyweight contender Michael Hunter. 
 
Welsh amateur star Sean McGoldrick (9-0, 2 KOs) says he is ready to push on towards title action but the 2010 Commonwealth gold medallist must first overcome former Commonwealth and English Flyweight champion Thomas Essomba (8-5, 3 KOs).
 
There’s also action for hard-hitting Montrose Super-Middleweight John Docherty (5-0, 5 KOs),Leeds Super-Bantamweight Qais Ashfaq (6-0, 3 KOs), Anthony Bellew-managed Light-Heavyweight prospect Thomas Hart (1-0), Anthony Crolla Lightweight protege Dylan Evans (2-0) and Manchester Welterweight debutant Nathan Farrell.
 
 Tickets priced £40, £60 and £120 (VIP) are available to purchase now from the Exhibition Centre Liverpool (www.ticketquarter.co.uk) (Phone: 0344 8000 400), StubHub (www.stubhub.co.uk) and Matchroom Boxing (www.matchroomboxing.com)
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FOWLER STEPS IN TO FACE ROSE AFTER FITZGERALD INJURY

Opportunity knocks for ‘The Machine’ on July 6
Anthony Fowler has stepped in to face Brian Rose in a must-win fight at Manchester Arena on Saturday July 6, live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US, after Scott Fitzgerald was forced to withdraw from his title defence against Rose through injury. 

Fowler suffered a first career defeat at the hands of Fitzgerald in March and was preparing to make his ring return on the July 6 card when he was handed a golden opportunity to take on former World title challenger Rose in the place of his bitter rival.

“I want tests and I want to be involved in the big fights,” said Fowler. “As soon as we heard the news that Scott had to pull out we grabbed the opportunity with both hands. I’m not in this game to be taking easy fights. Brian has mixed it at the top level throughout his career and this is a fantastic chance for me to test myself against an experienced opponent.

“I learnt a lot from my last fight and we went away and improved in a few areas. I know that I’m in for a tough night’s work in Manchester but this is a fight that I feel ready and prepared for. I was already massively motivated for my return on July 6 but this has given me another boost. 

“I’m already in great shape, I’d be ready to fight next week. Brian is a big name and I think he’ll get the best out of me on the night. I know Brian and consider him as a friend, but this is strictly business and I’ve got a job to do next month. This is must-win for me.”

“Everyone knows that I’ve got a loyal following and although the original fight with Scott was a big Preston vs. Blackpool derby, I’ll still be bringing big numbers to Manchester on July 6 as Fowler is probably a bigger draw than Scott,” said Rose. “He’s a more well-known fighter even though Scott beat him and it’s a better fight.

“On paper it’s an easier fight, I don’t see it like that but this has all worked out better for me because when I beat Fowler I’ll have more options ahead of me and we’ll be able to demand more. I’m really looking forward to fighting Fowler and to fighting on the big stage again. 

“It’s where I believe I belong, I’ve worked hard to get back on the big stage by fighting on those small hall shows which were great, but there wasn’t much exposure. I’ve done it all in the background, I’ve worked really hard over the last year to get myself fit and into the position that I’m in now and I’ll make it count next month.”

Fowler vs. Fitzgerald is part of a huge night of action in Manchester, Lawrence Okolie (12-0, 9 KOs) puts his British and Commonwealth Cruiserweight titles on the line against Jack Massey (16-0, 8 KOs), Felix Cash (11-0, 7 KOs) defends his Commonwealth Middleweight crown against Bolton’s Jack Cullen (16-1, 7 KOs), Anthony Fowler (9-1, 8 KOs) returns after his first pro defeat, Sheffield’s Dalton Smith looks to go 2-0 as a pro and Anthony Crolla Lightweight protégé Dylan Evans fights at Manchester Arena for the first time, with more exciting additions to the card to follow.

Tickets priced £40, £60, £100 and £200 (VIP) are available to purchase now via StubHub (www.stubhub.co.uk), Manchester Arena via ticketmaster (www.ticketmaster.co.uk) and Matchroom Boxing (www.matchroomboxing.com).
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