Rising Stars Scott, Towl and Hopewell Impressive on Saturday’s Historic First UK All Female Pro Boxing Event.

 

Review by Gianluca Di Caro

Photographs courtesy of Alistair Campbell.

On Saturday 24th April History was made when six time, five division World Champion and Promoter Lee Mcallister promoted the first ever all female professional boxing event, titled LET BATTLE COMMENCE – THE LIONESSES, to take place in the United Kingdom. The event, which took place behind closed doors at the Northern Hotel in Aberdeen and was broadcast live and free to view on FITE TV as well as globally on numerous linear and digital channels.

Back in September last year, when McAllister originally announced the history making event, which then was due to be co-headlined by WIBA Minimum Weight World Champion Denise Castle and returning MBC International Champion Marianne Marston it went viral, female fighters and boxing fans around the world retweeting and sharing the social media posts. 

However within weeks of making the announcement fate dealt the Aberdeen Assassin a massive blow, as both the British and Scottish Government announced that the countries would go into full lockdown for the entire month of November.

McAllister set a new date was for January 2021 but just three weeks prior to the new date the UK once again went into lockdown. Frustratingly McAllister had to reschedule the date once more, this time to the 24th April 2021.

Early in April it looked like the event may have to be rescheduled again, as it was clear that, due to the pandemic, travel restrictions were introduced, a number of the overseas boxers contracted to fight would not be able to travel to the UK. 

It wasn’t just ‘away’ fighters affected, such as the proposed opponents of the co-headline fighters Castle and Marston, but also Ellie Coulson, Hollie Towl, Sophie Varley and Jaime Bates’ opponents Ester Konecna, Angela Cannizzaro, Ivette Garcia and Jane Kavulani respectively, but also ‘home’ fighter Swiss based World Boxing Council (WBC) Muay Thai World Champion Natacha De Almeida, who was due to make her Professional Boxing Debut was unable to travel due to local restrictions.

Undaunted McAllister decided to continue with a reduced card of just six fights featuring UK based fighters only, well that was until just a week before showtime, when Manchester based Sophie Varley and Nicola Hopewell’s opponent Juliette Winter, who had been preparing for the fight in France, both had to pull out.

If that wasn’t enough for McAllister to contend with, just the day before the event Ellie Coulson’s replacement opponent Sarah Smith pulled out. 

Frantic phone calls by McAllister and others already in Aberdeen including matchmaker Giles Carter, eventually paid off and a new opponent secured for the highly talented Coulson, but the new line-up was dramatically different from the original one planned for last year, as now the event featured only five fights and no big names or title fights to head up the card.

As Tasha Boyes’ original fight against Sophie Varley was off and Juliette Winter couldn’t get back from France McAllister decided that the planned future rematch between Hopewell (2-0-0) and Boyes (0-2-0) would be bought forward and headline, Coulson (1-0-0) would now face pro boxing debutante Becky Jameson, a Glasgow based pro BKB fighter. Hollie Towl would face Belfast’s Cara MacLochlainn, a former Kick Boxing star and Irish Amateur Champion making her pro boxing debut, debuting Angelica Finch would now face Jaime Bates (1-3-0) and the original match-up between two former elite Amateur stars Estelle Scott and Kirsty Biswas remained the same.

The aforementioned former amateur stars Scott and Biswas was the opening fight of the night, and boy oh boy was it a close fought all action affair.

Right from the off both protagonists went at it hammer and tongs, letting rip with big shots to body and head throughout, the round reminded me of the wickedly intense first round war between Graham Earl and Michael Katsidis back in 2007.

As with the first stanza both returned to Gladiatorial ways and continued to battle at close range in both the second and third rounds and whilst the action slowed a little in the fourth the action was just as intense, just now the big bombs were flying.

The pace of the action clearly affected Biswas more than Scott, as the Middlesbrough based warrior slowed considerably, which opened the door for South Shields based Scott to take control and dominate the proceedings in style, backing Biswas up on occasions and letting rip with big flurries of shots.

At the end of the fifth Biswas looked very drained, so much so that on returning to the corner her coach voiced his concerns and following a short discussion with Biswas summoned referee Carla Fox and retired his charge in the corner.

Wow, that was one helluva battle, the battling Scott and Biswas threw down the gauntlet to the others competing on the night, and sure as eggs is eggs they did.

Next up see Worksop’s Ellie Coulson (1-0-0) face very, very late replacement Becky Jameson. 

Coulson, a three time national finalist and England amateur boxing national youth middleweight champion, wasn’t fazed one iota facing a bigger fighter from a different pro discipline, she calmly picked her shots each time Jameson came into range. 

Jameson is a plucky as they come, clearly outclassed by the elite former Amateur star she kept coming forward wanting to make a fight of it, but at a cost, Jameson was sent down just under a minute into the fight and after that Coulson’s class shone through. 

The Worksop lass landing big shots to Jameson’s head each time she came forward, when I say big shots I mean seriously solid straight rights that sent Jameson’s head back. As the fight went past the ninety second point Coulson landed yet another Exocet that rocked the Glaswegian to the core, Referee Carla Fox was clearly concerned at the amount of powerful shots Jameson had taken in the first ninety seconds or so and stepped in and waived the fight off on the one minute and forty two second mark.

Jameson was game taking the fight at such late notice, no question about that, she came to fight BUT Coulson is a seriously class act, personally think even after only two pro fights she’s definitely one of the best Female fighters in the Super Welterweight/Middleweight divisions worldwide and it’s just a matter of time before everyone in the division will begin avoiding her.

Third fight of the night pitted the sensational teenage former five time National Amateur Champion Hollie Towl (1-0-0) against the seriously tough former Kick Boxing star and Irish Amateur Champion from Belfast Cara MacLochlainn, who was making her professional boxing debut.

Initially both protagonists began cautiously feeling out the other and then the fight just exploded into action and when I say action, wow what a round, these two Warriors exchanged blow after blow. it was pure poetry in motion. As the round progressed Towl’s class began to shine through, as she started creating openings before firing scintillatingly fast and hard body shots at the torso of her Irish opponent.

Round two started similarly to the first, however Towl shifted up a gear and started targeting the body of the ‘Belfast Bomber’ and landing wickedly vicious shots MacLochlainn is one talented and tough cookie as not only did she just shake off the shots but would fire her own Exocets in return.

Round three was a WAR, both Warriors went in hard and fast, once again Towl shifted up another gear and began landing massive bodyshops, this time though MacLochlainn appeared to be struggling coping with the onslaught, at around midway through the second half of the round Towl landed a massive shot that sent the MacLochlainn reeling across the ring, I honestly thought the fight was over as it seemed her legs had gone, but somehow the tough Irishwoman managed to make it to the end of the round.

MacLochlainn looked drained when she came out for the fourth, which only encouraged Towl to come in hard and fast and land even more body shots, seemingly at will.

After such a hard round I was surprised when MacLochlainn came out looking ready to go to war again in the fifth, she put up a good fight but again Towl landed some incredible shots throughout the round. 

The sixth and final round mirrored the second to a degree, without doubt Towl won the round with her incredible skill, but MacLochlainn kept the teenager honest and made a great fight of it.

No surprise that referee Carla Fox’s scorecard showed Towl as victor, by a 59-55 points margin, but plaudits to MacLochlainn she went the distance, a big surprise considering the amount of vicious body-shots she absorbed in the fight.

Quite rightly Towl-MacLochlainn was declared Fight of the Night and Hollie Towl the Fighter of the Night. The quietly spoken Towl seemed surprised when Sportanarium Radio’s Trevor Lake announced the accolade before presenting her with the Sportanarium ‘Fighter of the Night’ Belt. 

Next up was Boston, Lincolnshire’s former three time ABA Champion Angelica Finch, who was making her Professional debut, against York’s former PBC international Champion Jaime Bates (1-3-0).

This was looking to be a sensational match-up in the first minute or so as both protagonists approach virtually mirrored the other, literally as Finch was fighting in a southpaw stance and Bates boxes orthodox. 

Just as the action was really warming up, Referee Carla Fox signalled Finch into the neutral corner where the doctor awaited to check a bad cut sustained shortly before. 

The doctor advised the contest be waived off and as such the result was declared as Referee Stops Contest (RSC) on the one minute and forty two second mark of the first round.

Following the result Finch’s corner requested a review of the result, as they believe the cut came from an accidental clash of heads just before the final exchanges of the shortened contest. Their request has been submitted to the British & Irish Boxing Authority competition panel to review and ascertain if the result should stand as is.

Regardless of the result of the review, Finch vs Bates II is being discussed between the teams and promoter with the anticipated rematch coming in the very near future – I for one can’t wait for that as this fight had all the hallmarks of being a classic Battle Royale.

Time for the main event – Nicola Hopewell versus Tasha Boyes II.

Back in September last year Hopewell vs Boyes took place on LET BATTLE COMMENCE II – here’s my write-up on the first meeting between them.

OK, now were onto the fight I was really waiting for, Worksop’s Professional Boxing Council (PBC) International Silver Champion Nicola Hopewell versus York’s Tasha Boyes

I’ve been particularly looking forward to this contest since hearing about Tasha Boyes performance against Maria Cecchi in Italy a few weeks ago, which had earned high praise from the Italian media and I know just how good Nicola is, as was lucky enough to be ringside when she beat Ghana’s Anita Addy to lift the PBC crown back on March 7th. 

This fight had all the makings of being a classic, and the way it started out it surely would have been, Hopewell came out hard and fast and let rip with fast double handed combinations, which coincidently is how I had anticipated Boyes would approach things!

Boyes is as savvy as they come and soon began to use her height and reach advantage to get back in contention, but Hopewell’s magnificent ringcraft and oodles of talent soon put an end to that and as the round was heading to its conclusion backed Boyes up and began letting rip with a barrage of shots, somehow Boyes managed to find a way out but only a temporary respite as Hopewell went in for the kill and let rip once more to send Boyes to the canvas. 

Boyes must have landed awkwardly on her arm and aggravated the training injury she sustained in the week, as when she rose to her feet she was holding her arm and clearly in a lot of pain, her coach Giles Carter was so concerned he summoned Referee Graeme Beauly and retired her in the corner at the end of the round.

Have to admit that was a disappointing end to the highly anticipated contest, but there is some good news for Boyes as Hopewell has agreed to a rematch, I for one am really looking forward to that.

OK, the scene is set so now let’s get to Saturday night’s Hopewell-Boyes II showdown.

Right from the opening bell both fighters moved to centre ring, initially just feeling out the other but seconds later Boyes moved in and let rip with a straight left followed by a left-right combination, Hopewell responds with a big right to kick off the proceedings. What an absolutely fantastic highly technical, all action first round.

Thoroughly enjoyed the first stanza, however the second was even better as Hopewell shifted up a gear and used her fantastic ring craft to circumnavigate Boyes’ superior reach to land some seriously awesome shots.

Don’t get me wrong Boyes landed some first class shots too but Hopewell’s class and experience really shone through, especially in the second half of the round, culminating in a scintillating powerful body-shot that sent Boyes to the canvas. Boyes surprisingly raised to her feet before the count reached its conclusion, but clearly was still in a lot of distress, so much so that Referee Carla Fox didn’t hesitate to waive the fight off on the one minute forty two second mark of the second round.

Some nine years after amateur Female boxing hit the headlines at the London 2012 Olympics, finally the first female professional event took place in the UK, interestingly LET BATTLE COMMENCE – LIONESSES was not only the first all female pro boxing event in the UK, but I believe is also the first event to be officiated by female official in the main roles – these were; Supervisor/Official Recorder Alejandra Ramirez, Referee Carla Fox and Chief inspector Jennie Boyle.

The entire event is still available free to view on FITE.TV (go to replays)

My final words on this historic event is that it was a great show, one that goes to prove you really don’t always need big names or Championship fights, even for a televised event, especially when the fights are as good as these were.

#LetBattleCommence

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QUARTET OF NATIONAL CHAMPIONS STAR ON HISTORIC BRITISH ALL FEMALE PRO BOXING EVENT ON 24TH APRIL 2021

Six time, five division World Champion and Promoter Lee Mcallister and the British & Irish Boxing Authority (BIBA) jointly announced an historic all female professional boxing event, titled LET BATTLE COMMENCE – THE LIONESSES, in association with Bounty Competitions, RDX, Empire Pro Tape and Go Sports & Entertainment that will take place in the United Kingdom on Saturday 24th April 2021 and will be broadcast live and free to view on FITE TV as well as further linear and digital channels globally (please check local listings)

To date the LET BATTLE COMMENCE series, which were broadcast live on FITE TV and delayed broadcast in the UK on Sports Channel Network (Freeview/YouView Channel 265), has featured female contests on all events.

The inaugural LET BATTLE COMMENCE event took place on the 18th July 2020 and hosted the professional boxing debut of ten time Kick Boxing World Champion Caitlin Foran against PBC International Silver Champion Jaime Bates.

LET BATTLE COMMENCE II, which was broadcast live on Friday 4th September 2020, featured three female contests, the first featured PBC International Silver Super Flyweight Champion Nicola Hopewell versus Tasha Boyes, also featured on the card were Elite Amateur Stars Hollie Towl and Ellie Coulson who made their respective professional boxing debuts against Jaime Bates and Beccy Ferguson.

LET BATTLE COMMENCE – THE LIONESSES, in association with Bounty Competitions, RDX, Empire Pro Tape and Go Sports & Entertainment that takes place behind closed doors at the Northern Hotel in Aberdeen on the 24th April 2021 is set to enter the record books as the first all Female professional boxing event to take place not only in the UK but also the first in Europe.

The stellar card features no less than four highly decorated former Amateur Champions; 

Nicola Hopewell is a development national champion and regional and National amateur England boxing flyweight champion with multiple box cup titles. On the 24th April Nicola Hopewell will be making her third Professional outing and faces a tough test against Sheffield’s Juliette Winter

Hollie Towl is a 5 time ABA national champion! At three different weights won back to back over five years !! A huge accolade and unprecedented! Hollie is also a national England boxing youth lightweight champion and multiple box cup including Irish titles. Hollie Towl, who will be making her second appearance in the LET BATTLE COMMENCE series, faces former Kick Boxing rising star Cara MacLochlainn who makes her Professional Boxing debut on the event.

Ellie Coulson is a three time national finalist and England boxing national youth middleweight champion with again multiple box cup titles. Ellie Coulson will also be making her second appearance in the series, this time she faces Ester Konecna from the Czech Republic. 

The fourth is former GB squad member and three-time ABA champion Angelica Finch, who will box at Featherweight. Angelica Finch has a tough professional boxing debut as she takes on Shrewsbury’s former PBC International Silver Super Bantamweight Champion Jaime Bates

Joining the highly decorated quorum of Champions on the LET BATTLE COMMENCE – THE LIONESSES, in association with Bounty Competitions, RDX, Empire Pro Tape and Go Sports & Entertainment event are;

Former Elite Amateur, South Shields’ Estelle Scott, will make her professional debut against fellow pro debutant Kirsty Biswas from Middlesbrough.

Manchester’s former PBC International Silver Super Bantamweight Champion Sophie Varley, who now competes at Super Flyweight, will face Natasha Boyes.

LET BATTLE COMMENCE – THE LIONESSES, in association with Bounty Competitions, RDX, Empire Pro Tape and Go Sports & Entertainment will take place on the 24th April 2021 and will be broadcast live and free to view on FITE TV, AVO NETWORK, SPORTS CHANNEL NETWORK, SOWETO TV  as well as further linear and digital channels globally (please check local listings)

www.letbattlecommence.com

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LET BATTLE COMMENCE II Bendana Stops Beattie – Former Amateur Stars Towl and Coulson Win In Style On Pro Debuts.

Photographs courtesy: Ali Campbell

The second event in the LET BATTLE COMMENCE ‘behind closed doors’ series, in association with PAPA JOHN’S PIZZA and NEON ENERGY DRINK, which was broadcast live on FITE TV, finally took place on Friday night at the the Northern Hotel in Aberdeen, after being forced to be rescheduled twice in August due to COVID-19 pandemic issues, the most recent due to Aberdeen being put back in lockdown just a few days before the event was due to take place on August 15th. 

I’ve become quite used to watching sports without spectators the past few months, as have us all, but to actually be at a behind closed doors event feels so weird, there’s just no atmosphere, they seem so sterile, and that’s not just because everyone involved is wearing facemarks and surgical gloves etc.

However on Friday night my initial negativity at the lack of atmosphere soon evaporated, as the fights were nothing short of sensational, so much so that I often had to stop myself literally jumping to my feet and vocally supporting the warriors as they battled it out in the ring.

Anyway, enough of my waffling, let’s get onto the fights themselves.

The opening fight of the night see Teen Amateur Star Hollie Towl from Sheffield make her professional debut, against Shrewsbury’s Jaime Bates.

Those that know me are fully aware I am a huge fan of female boxing, but not many will know I’m also a fan of Jaime Bates. 

I was lucky enough to be ringside when she beat Sophie Varley to lift the Professional Boxing Council (PBC) International Silver title in Lincoln last year, and I was also ringside when she stepped in at the last minute and fought former ten time Kickboxing World Champion Caitlin Foran in Aberdeen back in July, which she lost by a very close points decision, so I knew what to expect from her, performance wise, on Friday night.

What I didn’t expect to see though was a teenager as slick and controlled as the sensational Hollie Towl, wow what a class act. 

As a side note I was a friend of, as well as an advisor for, Olympic Gold Medalist Luke Campbell during his amateur career and spent some highly enjoyable times at his training sessions with Terry Edwards at the TKO Gym in Canning Town during my stint as Managing Director, as well as sometimes at other gyms in London ahead of the Olympics in 2012.

Believe me Hollie is already at the level Luke was then, actually no, I’d say she is probably at a higher level, yeah she really is that good.

I was in seventh heaven watching these sensational talents in action against each other, it was like a symphony of the pugilistic arts to a level that is rarely seen, they both boxed supremely, their different styles perfectly complementing the others.

Towl though is another level, I would never try and deny her the much deserved plaudits of winning her first pro contest, to the same degree I have to praise Bates for the way she fought, she could have tried to ruin Towl’s flow by holding or even gone on a walkabout but she didn’t, she endeavoured to give as good as she got throughout. 

The fifth round was such a disappointment though, not the fight itself but the way it ended.

Around the halfway mark of the round there was a horrible clash of heads that opened up a nasty cut over Bates’ left eye, it appeared so bad that Bates’ coach Giles Carter didn’t hesitate and immediately threw the towel in to the ring, leaving referee Graeme Beauly no option but to stop the contest on the one minute and thirty two seconds mark of the fifth stanza.

That was one seriously great fight, even though it was the first fight I was convinced that it would be the Fight of the Night and Hollie would be declared Fighter of the Night, however as it turns out I was wrong, that was just the opening shot on a night of unbelievably exciting pugilistic action.

The second fight on the card pitted Aberdeen’s Samer Carol, who was stepping up to the pro ranks for the first time, against Towl’s Xbox team mate Ben Gore, who was also making his professional debut.

Whilst not quite an all action thriller like the opening fight, it was without doubt a very good fight to watch, as it was more like a pugilistic chess match.

Gore’s game plan, of hanging out a straight arm jab, forced Carol to constantly adapt his game plan, as each time the local lad tried to work his way around the arm and get inside and let rip he would open up a gap for Gore to take advantage off and land a shot or two of his own. 

It wouldn’t be until the third round that Carol finally had sussed out a route through and enjoyed some real success, in doing so forced Gore to change tactics and go toe-to-toe.

Gore adapted his original game plan slightly in the fourth and once again made life really hard for Carol, as once more he had to constantly change his approach in order to achieve any success.

After four intriguing, yet highly enjoyable, rounds Referee Graeme Beauly’s scorecard read 39-37 in favour of Ben Gore.

The next fight, a Heavyweight contest that also pitted debutant against debutant, see Aberdeen’s Craig Dick take on Essex hard man Michael Bassett.

I will say right away I have never really been a big fan of the Heavyweights, I prefer all action fights and it is so rare to see them when the big boys come out to play. 

Well this particular fight has definitely changed my view of the division, it was awesome, I couldn’t look away, not even for a second, it was an exhilarating ALL ACTION affair from start to finish.  

From the opening bell both lads went in hard and fast, the initial close quarters exchanges were phenomenal, huge shots flying in from both with seemingly little regard to defence, but as the round progressed the action slowed a little, Dick began to land some cracking shots, Bassett would respond immediately with a big right, some of which landed but most just leaving the Essex man open to receive a solid jab or a big right.

As the fight progressed Bassett appeared to become increasingly frustrated, leading to him changing his game plan ever so slightly and focus on letting rip with huge overhand rights, have to say probably could have been a very good plan, because if one had landed flush without doubt the local man would have made a visit to the canvas, however Dick is savvy and listened to his coach Lee McAllister’s instruction and kept his cool and didn’t let the fight develop into a brawl, which would have suited Bassett for sure.

What a fight, both protagonists constantly letting rip with huge shots, I have to admit I was surprised that it went the distance, I was expecting a knockout finish as both protagonists landed some seriously powerful shots, these lads must be made of granite!

After four sensational, and I mean sensational, rounds Referee Graeme Beauly’s scorecard read 40-36 in favour of Aberdeen’s Craig Dick. 

I cannot argue Dick won the fight, but believe me it could have easily have been Michael Bassett, who I can’t wait to watch in action again, boy oh boy he’s such an exciting fighter.

Now I said earlier I was convinced that Towl versus Bates would be Fight of the Night, well I was wrong, and it shocks me that I am writing that a Heavyweight contest could or would be as exciting to watch as Craig Dick versus Michael Bassett was, this fight really does deserve the accolade of Fight of the Night, what’s more that wasn’t just my view (for what that’s worth) but also that of Boxing TV’s very own Dan Hewitt who was commentating on the night.

The fourth fight of the night see another teenage World Class Amateur, Worksop’s Ellie Coulson, making her professional debut. 

On Friday night Coulson, the Amateur English Champion, faced Shrewsbury’s Beccy Ferguson, who also was making her pro debut. Ferguson’s route to the professional ranks couldn’t be any more different to that of Coulson if you tried, as the bubbly redhead honed her craft in the unlicensed ranks.

They may have progressed to the pro ranks from very different disciplines but on Friday the two warriors shared the same ring and went into battle right from the opening bell.

Initially Coulson controlled the proceedings with ease, utilising her height and reach advantage to keep the ever forward moving Ferguson at bay, however Ferguson soon started to exert some pressure of her own, even though it meant often having to take a few shots to get a shot off of her own.

Round two was much the same as the first, with Coulson dominating much of the round, please don’t get me wrong Ferguson took advantage of any inkling of a chink in Coulson’s armour she could find to land some cracking shots of her own, unfortunately for Ferguson, the youngster doesn’t seem to have many at all.

Ferguson had a little more success in the third, at times literally walking through shots to back Coulson towards the ropes and letting rip with both hands, Coulson though has sensational ringcraft, which prevented Ferguson getting too much time on the attack.

Coulson’s movement was nothing short of sensational, each time Ferguson came in she would throw out a solid jab, then as she stepped around her opponent would let rip with another shot or combination before Ferguson could reposition – sorry you need to watch the fight, I really cannot adequately describe the exquisite move, but will say it was class, seriously class.

The excellent round was virtually replicated in the following rounds, although the opportunities for Ferguson began to become fewer and fewer as the fight progressed, but when those opportunities arose the gutsy Ferguson went for it hammer and tongs right up to the point Coulson decided to spin out and let rip with a jab or combination. 

After six highly entertaining all action rounds it was time for Referee Graeme Beauly scorecards to be announced, which was 60-54 in favour of Ellie Coulson.

I have to commend Beccy Ferguson, she really put on a great performance, which would under most circumstances lead to her hand being raised in victory, however she faced without doubt one of the best young boxers in the country, Ellie Coulson, oh and whose absolutely sensational performance rightly earned her the accolade of Fighter of the Night.

The fifth fight of the night pitted Denny’s unbeaten prospect Kevin Traynor in action against Nicaragua’s Johnson Tellez. If you watched the first LET BATTLE COMMENCE, you’ll know just how tough Tellez is as he went the distance against another unbeaten prospect, Lewis Mulberry, back in July.

What a cracking fight, to be honest it was almost a repeat of the storming Dick-Bassett Heavyweight Battle Royale but one third scale, as both fighters went to war for four scintillating rounds. 

Traynor is a classy operator, naturally slick and stylish, but willing to get down and dirty in a toe-to-toe brawl when needed, and on Friday he needed to dig deep into his well stocked locker, as Tellez never stops coming forward and loves a good scrap.

Have to say if there was a Round of the Night award, Traynor-Tellez would have won that hands down for the second round, wow what a round, neither warrior would concede a centimetre let alone an inch, it was a truly enjoyable experience watching these two really dig in and go for it, personally I couldn’t split them and having seen the scorecards know that Referee Graeme Beauly had the same problem as he scored the round a draw, whilst talking scores, Graeme Beauly’s full scorecard was 40-37 in favour of Kevin Traynor.

All rounds were fantastic all actions affairs but round two stands out as something really special, like I said about Dick-Bassett, you just couldn’t look away for a singe second, it was that enthralling.

OK, now were onto the fight I was really waiting for, Worksop’s Professional Boxing Council (PBC) International Silver Champion Nicola Hopewell versus York’s Tasha Boyes

I’ve been particularly looking forward to this contest since hearing about Tasha Boyes performance against Maria Cecchi in Italy a few weeks ago, which had earned high praise from the Italian media and I know just how good Nicola is, as was lucky enough to be ringside when she beat Ghana’s Anita Addy to lift the PBC crown back on March 7th. 

This fight had all the makings of being a classic, and the way it started out it surely would have been, Hopewell came out hard and fast and let rip with fast double handed combinations, which coincidently is how I had anticipated Boyes would approach things!

Boyes is as savvy as they come and soon began to use her height and reach advantage to get back in contention, but Hopewell’s magnificent ringcraft and oodles of talent soon put an end to that and as the round was heading to its conclusion backed Boyes up and began letting rip with a barrage of shots, somehow Boyes managed to find a way out but only a temporary respite as Hopewell went in for the kill and let rip once more to send Boyes to the canvas. 

Boyes must have landed awkwardly on her arm and aggravated the training injury she sustained in the week, as when she rose to her feet she was holding her arm and clearly in a lot of pain, her coach Giles Carter was so concerned he summoned Referee Graeme Beauly and retired her in the corner at the end of the round.

Have to admit that was a disappointing end to the highly anticipated contest, but there is some good news for Boyes as Hopewell has agreed to a rematch, I for one am really looking forward to that.

The headline fight pitted Professional Boxing Council (PBC) and World Boxing Union (WBU) International Champion Nathan Beattie (10-4-0) from Aberdeen against Nicaraguan Prospect Julio Bendana (6-2-0) in a non-championship six rounder.

Right from the off these two warriors went to war, Beattie getting the upper hand in the first stanza due mainly to his superior ringcraft and crisper shots. Cracking round.

Bendana secured the second round with a knockdown, that came at the right time for the Nicaraguan, as Beattie was really beginning to get into a flow, don’t get me wrong it was close at that point but Beattie was beginning to take control. Beattie didn’t seem quite the same after the knockdown, as was clear right from the start of the third.

Bendana went straight on the attack looking to carry on from where he finished the second, Beattie fought back but was clearly not right, then Bendana let rip with another huge shot to send Beattie down again, immediately his coach Lee Mcallister signalled referee Graeme Beauly and threw in the towel on the 32 second mark of the third round.

At the post fight interview with Boxing TV’s Dan Hewitt and PBC Champion Paul Peers who was co-commentator, Beattie said that he believes he had burst an eardrum in the fight, which had affected his balance.

What a fantastic event and I for one am looking forward to next instalment of LET BATTLE COMMENCE, which if all goes well and no other pandemic issues is scheduled to take place on the 19th September and like LET BATTLE COMMENCE II will be broadcast worldwide live on FITE TV and delayed broadcast in the UK seven days later on Sports Channel Network (Freeview/YouView Channel 265) 

www.letbattlecommence.com 

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Three Sensational Female Fights on LET BATTLE COMMENCE II Live on FITE TV Friday 4th Sept

Promoter Lee Mcallister announced earlier that there will now be three female contests on the upcoming LET BATTLE COMMENCE II, in association with PAPA JOHN’S PIZZA and NEON ENERGY DRINK, which takes place ‘behind closed doors’ at the Northern Hotel in Aberdeen and broadcast exclusively live by FITE TV on Friday 4th September 2020.

The first of these mouthwatering fights features Sheffield’s sensational Five Time National Amateur Champion Star Hollie Towl in action against reigning Professional Boxing Council (PBC) International Silver Champion Jaime Bates.

Towl began boxing at the age of 11 years and during her esteemed Amateur career Towl secured numerous accolades including; East Midlands Champion 2015 – 2020, National Champion 2014-2020 at three different weight classes, East Midlands box cup champion 2018 and 2019, National association of boys and girls club champion 2019, Esker Irish box cup champion 2019, Esker Irish box cup silver medal 2018, England boxing winter box cup champion 2019, Hull box cup champion 2019 and 2020, National welterweight champion belt holder 2019 and Xbox Academy champion of champions belt holder two years running 2018-2020.

Towl was invited to join the England Boxing National Pathway Squad and has sparred WBC World Champion Terri harper and Commonwealth Champion Nina Bradley.

Towl’s opponent on the 4th September is Professional Boxing Council (PBC) International Silver Champion Jaime Bates from Shrewsbury

Back in November 2019, Bates fought and beat Sophie Varley to secure the PBC International Silver Crown by a close unanimous points decision, the Judges scorecards reading; Adrian Thorne 59-57 James Ancliff 58-57 Graeme Beauly 59-56

In July Bates stepped in at the last minute to face ten time Kick Boxing World Champion Caitlin Foran on the first LET BATTLE COMMENCE event. 

The fight was quite rightly declared the ‘Fight of the Night’ as it was a closely fought Battle Royale, Bates losing by a very close 58-56 points margin.

The second features Worksop’s Teen Amateur Star Ellie Coulson who steps into the ring for her first Professional contest against fellow debutante Shrewsbury’s Beccy Ferguson.

Coulson stated boxing at 12 years old and has had a stellar Amateur career, culminating in her winning numerous accolades, including; two time East Midlands champion, East Midlands box cup champion 2018 and 2019, Hull box cup champion 2019 and is the English Middleweight Champion and current belt holder.

Her opponent on the 4th September, Beccy Ferguson, comes from a very different pugilistic background to Coulson, having honed her skills within the realm of unlicensed boxing.

The final all female battle features the  UK #1 and World #27 Ranked Super Flyweight Worksop’s Nicola Hopewell in action against Leeds’ Tasha Boyes.

Back on March 7th, just before the UK went into lockdown, Hopewell secured her #1 UK ranking on BoxRanking.Com, as well as secure the Professional Boxing Council (PBC) International Silver Crown via a sensational second round knockout victory over Ghana’s Anita Addy at the Hoops Basketball Centre in Barrow-on-Furness.

As an Amateur Hopewell, a former England Pathway Squad member, shared the ring with a host of top class fighters including Commonwealth Gold Medalist and now undefeated pro boxer Lisa Whiteside and GB boxer Tori Ellis Willetts who is on the pathway for the Olympics. During her time at the Team GB facility in Sheffield Hopewell also sparred with the likes of double Olympic Gold Medalist Nicola Adams as well as WBC International Championship Challenger Nina Bradley and IBO and WBC World Champion Terri Harper.

Hopewell’s opponent on the 4th September will be 28 year old Tasha Boyes from York, who only got into boxing a couple of years ago, after hearing about two sisters whose parents had died in the Manchester Bombing and she wanted to do something to help them in some way, so she decided to participate in a ‘White Collar’ boxing event to raise money for the orphaned sisters. Boyes continued competing successfully on the unlicensed scene, competing in further Charity events to raise funds for those more in need than herself, until earlier this year. On the 15th August Boyes will be making making her professional debut

Nicola Hopewell and Tasha Boyes careers may have been via very different routes, but come the 4th September their journeys will lead them into the very same ring.

LET BATTLE COMMENCE II, is headlined by Nathan Beattie versus Julio Bendana, and features the aforementioned Ellie Coulson, who will be making her professional debut against fellow debutante Beccy Ferguson from Shrewsbury, Ellie’s team mate, at the Xbox Academy in Worksop and an equally sensational teen amateur star, Hollie Towl also makes her pro debut, against Shrewsbury’s Jaime Bates, whilst another fellow Xbox teammate Worksop’s Professional Boxing Council (PBC) Super Flyweight International Champion Nicola Hopewell is in action for the second time this year and faces York’s Tasha Boyes, Denny’s Kevin Traynor will be hoping to extend his unbeaten record as he faces the seriously Nicaraguan Johnson Tellez andmaking their pro debuts against each other are Super Welterweights Samer Carol and Ben Gore and in the Heavyweight division Craig Dick and Michael Bassett.

4th September 2020 LET BATTLE COMMENCE II PPV ($4:99) is available to purchase now on FITE TV https://www.fite.tv/watch/let-battle-commence-beattie-arauz/2p7rq/

www.letbattlecommence.com 

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Two Sensational Female Fights Feature on LET BATTLE COMMENCE II Live on FITE TV August 15th

Promoter Lee Mcallister announced earlier that there will be two female contests on the upcoming LET BATTLE COMMENCE II, in association with PAPA JOHN’S PIZZA and NEON ENERGY DRINK, which takes place ‘behind closed doors’ at the OYO Northern Hotel in Aberdeen and broadcast exclusively live by FITE TV on Saturday 15th August 2020.

The first of the all female battles features on the  UK #1 and World #27 Ranked Super Flyweight Worksop’s Nicola Hopewell in action against Leeds’ Tasha Boyes.

Back on March 7th, just before the UK went into lockdown, Hopewell secured her #1 UK ranking on BoxRanking.Com via a sensational second round knockout victory over Ghana’s Anita Addy at the Hoops Basketball Centre in Barrow-on-Furness.

As an Amateur Hopewell, a former England Pathway Squad member, shared the ring with a host of top class fighters including Commonwealth Gold Medalist and now undefeated pro boxer Lisa Whiteside and GB boxer Tori Ellis Willetts who is on the pathway for the Olympics. During her time at the Team GB facility in Sheffield Hopewell also sparred with the likes of double Olympic Gold Medalist Nicola Adams as well as WBC International Championship Challenger Nina Bradley and IBO and WBC World Champion Terri Harper.

Hopewell’s opponent on the 15th August will be 28 year old Tasha Boyes from York, who only got into boxing a couple of years ago, after hearing about two sisters whose parents had died in the Manchester Bombing and she wanted to do something to help them in some way, so she decided to participate in a ‘White Collar’ boxing event to raise money for the orphaned sisters. Boyes continued competing successfully on the unlicensed scene, competing in further Charity events to raise funds for those more in need than herself, until earlier this year. On the 15th August Boyes will be making making her professional debut

Nicola Hopewell and Tasha Boyes careers may have been via very different routes, but come the 15th August their journeys will lead them into the very same ring.

The second of these mouthwatering fights features two pro debutante’s in action against each other, when Sheffield’s sensational Five Time National Amateur Champion Star Hollie Towl goes toe-to-toe with the World Boxing Council (WBC) Muay Thai World Champion Natacha De Almeida from Switzerland.

Towl began boxing at the age of 11 years and during her esteemed Amateur career Towl secured numerous accolades including; 

East Midlands Champion 2015 – 2020

National Champion 2014-2020 at three different weight classes 

East Midlands box cup champion 2018 and 2019. 

National association of boys and girls club champion 2019. 

Esker Irish box cup champion 2019. 

Esker Irish box cup silver medal 2018. 

England boxing winter box cup champion 2019. 

Hull box cup champion 2019 and 2020. 

National welterweight champion belt holder 2019. 

Xbox academy champion of champions belt holder two years running 2018-2020.

Towl was invited to join the England Boxing National Pathway Squad and has sparred WBC World Champion Terri harper and Commonwealth Champion Nina Bradley.

Towl’s opponent on the 15th August, 28 year old Natacha De Almeida, is the current WBC and PFF Muay Thai World Champion.

In March 2019 De Almeida travelled to Bukom Boxing Arena in Accra, Ghana, where she faced and beat the bookies favourite Malaysian Dolphina Waltertony, to secure the coveted Green WBC Belt.

De Almeida has always had world class stand-up skills, so the transition to Professional Boxing should not be too much for the Muay Thai World Champ.

The full card for LET BATTLE COMMENCE II, in Association with PAPA JOHN’S PIZZA and NEON ENERGY DRINK, which takes place on Saturday 15th August 2020 and will be broadcast exclusively live on FITE TV, is:

1) Middleweight 

Six time, Five Division World Champion, and Promoter of the LET BATTLE COMMENCE series, Lee McAllister makes his first appearance on the series and faces Spain based Nicaraguan Edwin Palacios in the headline fight. Palacios has stated he’s up to the challenge and to expect fireworks.

2) Featherweight 

Sensational Teen former Amateur Star Hollie Towl will be making her professional debut against equally sensational World Boxing Council (WBC) Muay Thai World Champion Natacha De Almeida from Switzerland, who will also be making her professional boxing debut.

3) Welterweight 

Unbeaten Jack Jones (4-0-0) from Leeds is set to take on Nicaraguan hard man Michael Isaac Carrero, after his original opponent Dean Porter withdrew.

4) Super Flyweight 

A truly mouthwatering contest sees PBC International Bronze Champion Nicola Hopewell go toe to toe with exciting Tasha Boyes from York, who will be making her professional debut.

5) Middleweight 

Liverpool’s Scott Mcintyre (4-1-0) is intent on making a major statement when he takes on seriously tough Nicaraguan Wilmer Gonzalez (21-18-1), as just a few fights back Gonzalez KOd a former WBF European and International Champion, the very same Champ responsible for the only loss on the Liverpudlian’s record.

6) Super Featherweight 

Denny’s Kevin Traynor (2-0-0) will need to be at his best when he takes on the current International Masters Champion Pablo Narvaez from Nicaragua.

7) Heavyweight 

The final fight of the night will pit debutant against debutant as Craig Dick takes on Michael Bassett, both the big lads have stated they will be looking to make a big impression on the 15th August.

Lee Mcallister versus Edwin Palacios headlines LET BATTLE COMMENCE II, in association with PAPA JOHN’S PIZZA and NEON ENERGY DRINK and will take place at the Northern Hotel in Aberdeen and broadcast exclusively live on FITE TV on Saturday 15TH AUGUST 2020.

LET BATTLE COMMENCE II PPV ($4.99)  www.fite.tv

Please support LET BATTLE COMMENCE partners:

Papa John’s Pizza – Neon Energy Drink – OYO Northern Hotel, Aberdeen – Empire Pro Tapes – RDX Sports – Go Sports & Entertainment – Boxing & Mixed Martial Art Fighters Union (BMMAFU) – Pro Boxing Records (formerly Fight fax) – Box Ranking – Fite TV – Sports Channel Network (SCN) – British & Irish Boxing Authority (BIBA).

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