This evening, Saturday the 31st of March in Cardiff Matchroom are back with THE bill of 2018. This is the one we have all been waiting for… and I’m not even kidding… it’s an actual monster…
Last week Matchroom gave us an amazing night of boxing as knockouts came aplenty and people fell over in fights that were 50/50 until the first bell went. This evening they have a similar approach as this is a night of boxing like no other in 2018. Nearly 80,000 people get to see it live, millions, if not a billion shall witness it on pay per view and we get to have a fight that is simply a piece of boxing history; no matter what happens.
The value though of the evening is not just what happens in the final fight but what leads up to it on the undercard. Stacked is quite simply an understatement.
Light heavyweight Joshua Buatsi is back and is expected to blast his way past Bartlomiej Grafka in what should be a very tasty starter. Lightweight Anthony Crolla also returns in a trickier fight with Edson Ramirez but make no mistake this is Crolla on the way up, not the way down. Another lightweight Joe Cordina then takes on Hakim Ben Ali for the WBA international belt and again Cordina, at home will be expected to do the business.
We then get even more tasty as the welterweight Josh Kelly, widely touted for big things takes on Carlos Modina for the WBA international belt. This is a massive step up for Adam Booth’s charge and there is little doubt that should the kid manage it, world honours are on their way very soon.
We then have a world title fight as bantamweight Ryan Burnett is in against Yonfrez Parejo to defend his WBA title. This is another big step up for Burnett and it has to be said a tough step to take. At such an event defeat will not be considered and Burnett has worked exceptionally hard to get here. There are few who think this is likely to be a stumble but a competitive fight is fully expected and desired… not least by Burnett…
Then we get one of the most intriguing contests of the night as heavyweight Alexander Povetkin comes in against David Price to face off for the WBA intercontinental title. There is much that could be made of this and already has been. Price needs to win to resurrect his career, Povetkin needs to win to get an opportunity in with the other big boys. Plenty of good will exists towards the amiable Scouser but the story is whether his mental condition matches his physical one.
Then the main event.
This is simple. With the IBO, IBF, WBA Super and WBO heavyweight championships of the world at stake, Anthony Joshua takes on Joseph Parker.
Plenty of people are backing AJ to win, the smart money was on a long fight won in the later rounds but now people are talking about a fight that may end before the 6th bell, based on his weight at the weigh in and the fact that Parker looks to be carrying some excess poundage. This might end up a tactical game with an explosive ending, but it will keep tongues wagging for much longer than the course of the contest.
To show the depth and coverage that boxing now commands it is not the only fight night in the UK and in Liverpool super lightweight Michal Syrowatka and Robbie Davies Jr contest the WBA continental title in a fight that sees Davies Jr with a massive opportunity.
We also have in Preston 13 fights, in Nottingham – 5 fights and on Friday the 6th of April 10 fights in Hull and 6 fights in London.
Saturday 7th April
Las Vegas – super middleweight Caleb Truax defends his IBF belt against James DeGale and super welterweight title action between Erislandy Lara and Jarrett Hurd for the IBF,IBO and WBA super belts.
Paisley – an MTK bill with lightweight Andrew MacKay, super lightweight Callen McAuley against Rhys Saunders, heavyweight Jay McFarlane, middleweight Paul Kean facing Lewis Van Poetsch, welterweight Stefan Sanderson in against Victor Edagha, super lightweight Craig MacIntyre facing Michael Isaac Carrero, lightweight Thomas Dickson up against Naheem Chaudhry, super featherweight Monty Ogilvie in against Reynaldo Cadina, flyweight Ross Murray v Gary Reeve, bantamweight Iain Butcher, super welterweight Hannah Rankin fighting for the Commonwealth title and super middleweight Tommy Philbin fighting Anthony Fox.
Stoke-on Trent- 5 fights
Somewhere in wales! – 7 fights
Dudley – 6 fights
Doncaster – 8 fights