It’s a block buster weekend with much here and over there going on and making us pay attention – whilst some crazy Irishman seems to be taking on nations and religions in an Octagon!
For the boxing fan though we have some excellent treats in store. Tonight, Saturday the 6th of October in Chicago the heavyweight showdown between Jarell Miller and Tomasz Adamek is a big attraction for the latest Matchroom show – this one though is the very first big one in America. Should Miller come through with an impressive performance he is getting closer to his shot – but against who? He wants Joshua, after all that’s the money deal, but he may get a shot at the regular WBA belt first… If he beats Adamek, who came in worryingly light against Miller…
The welterweight fight between Jessie Vargas and Thomas Dulorme looks an absolute cracker and the money may be on Vargas, but there will be a lot of attention from the welterweight division on his progress here. Like Miller he needs a statement.
We then get serious for British fighters as we have two chasing world title dreams. First up is the WBA super bantamweight title contest between Daniel Roman and Gavin McDonnell. Following on from his twin, Gavin’s loss out in Japan, this is another very tough contest for a McDonnell and there would be absolutely no shame in coming up short here. Having said that Gavin McDonnell is very determined and though it may seem a step too far in so many respects, it is one that McDonnell would surprise but not shock if he could do it.
The real shock would come in the fight that sees the former Scottish Commonwealth medallist Callum Johnson take on Artur Berbetiev for the IBF light heavyweight title. Johnson jumped at the chance after asking, who’s he to his trainer, Joe Gallagher, to face Berbetiev. Despite such ignorance of his division initially, rest assured he knows who Berbetiev is now. The mountain he needs to climb though, is massive one if he is to win this. He has tugged at all the heart strings over his devotion to his lost father, but there is no sympathy in the ring as he takes on a true champion and a fearsome opponent – can he do it? I just do not know but Gallagher just came back from Dubai with an underdog wearing all the belts…
In Kanagawa, the World Boxing Super Series has not taken a break and they are back with a monster bill including the monster himself, Naoya Inoue with his WBA bantamweight title on the line against Juan Carlos Payano. There is another WBA title fight on the same night as Kiryl Relikh, former foe of our own Ricky Burns, will face Edouard Troyanovsky. The monster, Inoue takes the win tonight whilst Relikh may flatter, I think.
Meanwhile in the UK we have some great fighting action in Leicester as Frank Warren brings us heavyweight Daniel Dubois against Kevin Johnson in a real test for Dubois. The names in the heavyweight division that are sitting just under the elite – Bakole, Dubois, Joyce, Allen – are getting better and more real tests now so let’s see where this takes Dubois. I have a fancy for another quick knockout though…
The WBO European super featherweight fight between Leon Woodstock and Archie Sharp is a decent fight that could light up the night so all eyes will be keenly on it whilst a late addition of the super featherweight WBO intercontinental battle between Sam Bowen and Horacio Alfredo Cabal is another good fight that should provide plenty of entertainment.
The next stage on the journey of our female hope for a world title gets to the interim stage as we have the WBO title fight, in only her 5th professional contest, for Nicola Adams who is up against Isabel Millan. Adams has been very adept in her progress and pro career so this ought to be a highly impressive win if she gets it. the lack of opponents in the women’s boxing field should not be a source of criticism but opportunity and here Adams should grab it with both hands.
The headlining contest is the super lightweight contest between Jack Catterall and Ohara Davies for the WBO intercontinental belt. This is a new and much improved Ohara Davies who has gone from the mouth from the south to a respectful and more measured fighter. The drop he took in the ring against Josh Taylor seems to have mellowed him completely and that is far from being a bad thing. We are hoping to see a much better boxer, an improved prospect and a decent fight against Catterall who is not mug and may well prove a step in the wrong direction for Davies. This makes the fight very intriguing and I am looking forward to seeing what way we go. Can Davies put his career back in the world stage spotlight or can Catterall get his rightly deserved next phase up and running?
Up here is sunny Scotland and in Paisley Sam Kynoch brings super bantamweight Kirsten Fraser currently without an opponent, the Celtic title fights between Gary Rae and Scott Allan for the bantamweight belt and between Ryan Collins and Ahmed Ibrahim for the lightweight title. The home corners may be occupied by Rae and Collins, but I have always had admiration for Allan and Ibrahim has a growing reputation. No matter who wins in either contest, this is a cracking night of boxing. I fancy Allan with a points win and Collins with both then in line for a British title challenge afterwards. It’s a decent set of fights for Kynoch who, now away from MTK seems to be making the right moves in the right directions.
Elsewhere in the UK, in Oldham we have 8 fights, in York Hall, London 13 fights, in Tottenham, London 10 fights and in Maidstone no fewer than 8 fights
Later in the week on Friday the 9th of October in Sheffield there are 9 fights at the Pond’s Arena and 3 fights at the Double Tree Hilton.
Saturday 13th October
Ekaterinburg – World Boxing Super Series continues with the WBO bantamweight barn stormer between Zolani Tete and Mikhail Aloyan for the WBO belt, the IBF intercontinental super welterweight fight between Magomad Kurbanov and Howard Cospolite, the super middleweight WBA intercontinental fight between Vladimir Shishkin and Nadjib Mohammedi.
Omaha – welterweight Terence Crawford is back in the ring against Jose Benavidez Jr for the WBO crown
Newcastle – light heavyweight Hosea Burton, super bantamweight Thomas Patrick Ward, super welterweight Anthony Fowler, heavyweight Dave Allen, light heavyweight Joshua Buatsi fights for the WBA international belt, cruiserweight Simon Vallily takes on Craig Glover, the British and Commonwealth fight between Glenn Foot and Robbie Davies Jr is the aperitif for the EBU European title fight between the local hero, Lewis Ritson and Francesco Patera.
York Hall – Cyclone are in residence with heavyweight Martin Bakole Ilunga against Michael Hunter for the IBO continental title, Chantelle Cameron is up against Dahaina Santana for the IBO belt and Lee MacGregor takes on Thomas Essomba for the Commonwealth bantamweight crown.
Paisley – Sam Kynoch has a monster bill with super lightweight Adele Craw, bantamweight Stephen Boyle, flyweight Neil McCubbin, middleweight Trigger Wood, super lightweight Martin Taylor, middleweight Aston Brown, super lightweight Aidan McGlynn, lightweight Calvin McCord takes on Jamie Quinn, featherweight Monty Ogilvie is back, lightweight Andrew MacKay takes on Thomas Dickson and for the Scottish title, Craig MacIntyre is in against Marek Laskowski at super lightweight.
Tottenham, London – 12 fights.