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UK Boxing: Nathan DeCastro; Shane McPhilbin; Tommy Coyle

Nathan DeCastro has put Chris Eubank jnr at the top of his hit list after being handed the date for his professional debut.

Manager Jason McClory has confirmed DeCastro will box on a championship bill in Cleethorpes on Friday, October 19 – and the 21 year-old from Lincoln has mapped out his plan to climb the middleweight rankings and secure a match with Eubank jnr.

As amateurs, they boxed twice – and DeCastro had the Brighton showman on the floor with the first punch of their first fight in Lincoln.
Eubank jnr is currently rated one of the best prospects in British boxing with millions of fight fans tuning in to watch him box on Channel Five.

DeCastro is convinced he will end his ambitions of following father Chris to the top of the boxing world.
“I will beat him in the pros,” promised Decastro. “Eubank jnr is one of the reasons why I decided to turn professional.

“I wanted to fight him on my debut, but Jason said I should wait. It would be great to fight him for a title.”

DeCastro fights for fun and reckons he won “about half” of his 91 bouts with Bracebridge Amateur Boxing Club.

As an amateur, he was a heart-on-his sleeve scrapper and scalped top talents like Adam Etches, currently an unbeaten pro, and England international Dominic Deevey.

DeCastro also boxed for England against Australia. At short notice he accepted the chance to box Damien Hooper, won the Youth Olympics and boxed at this summer’s London Olympics at light-heavyweight.

Throughout his amateur career, DeCastro showed that regardless of size or reputation, he will fight them all and McClory says that’s why he is so excited to add him to his stable.

McClory, also an international agent who works with the Klitschkos, said: “Nathan is a real fighter.
“He’s not a poseur, he gets in there because he wants to fight.

“He’s exciting to watch. From first bell to last, he gets stuck in and I’m sure people will want to watch him box. I want to keep Nathan busy and hopefully he will have five wins under his belt by the end of this season.”

DeCastro will be trained by his father, Frank, and Gaz Jenkinson.
He lives with his father in Bardney, just outside Lincoln, and said: “Dad makes sure I get out of bed and do my runs.”

From the start, Frank has been in Nathan’s corner.

“I was a bit of a tearaway when I was younger,” admitted Decastro, “so dad took me to the gym to calm me down when I was 10 years old. I had my first bout when I was 11 and I’ve been fighting ever since.”
DeCastro worked with Lincoln legends Kelly Oliver, Tony Dowling and Michael Monaghan at Bracebridge ABC and now follows them into the professional ranks.

“I’m just going to give it my best shot,” he said. “Shane McPhilbin came from nowhere to win the British cruiserweight title and that just shows that anything can happen.
“I spoke to a few managers, but Jason made me the best offer and with him behind me I’m sure I can fulfil my potential.”

Tickets for the show are available from 07793-441296.


Shane McPhilbin wants back something he feels was taken from him unfairly – the British cruiserweight title.

In a dramatic contest that saw both men hit the deck, Shane wrenched the belt from former champion Leon ‘Solid’ Williams via a final round KO in January this year.

Just two months later, however, in his first defence against Enzo Maccarinelli, McPhilbin found himself on the wrong end of a genuine ring injustice.

Having already put Enzo over, and with the Welshman out on his feet and on the verge of being stopped, the bell to end the first round was tolled 47 seconds early! Consequently, with that early, unfair respite proving long enough for Maccarinelli to recover his senses, Shane ultimately ended up losing his crown on a points decision.

Throw into the mix too, then, that Enzo was also banned after the bout for failing a random drugs test and you can understand that Shane, 8-3 (5), feels hard done by that he won’t be facing County Durham’s Jon-Lewis Dickinson as British champion when the pair meet for the vacant title at Liverpool’s Echo Arena on October 13.

Part of an undercard that is headlined by David Price defending his British heavyweight title against Audley Harrison; McPhilbin versus Dickinson has all the hallmarks of a great domestic dust-up.

Hear more from Shane as he heads into the contest:

How frustrating has the whole Enzo Maccarinelli situation been for you?

It’s done my head in a bit, obviously with the drug test and all that.

I think the fight should have gone down as a ‘No Contest’ because it just makes a farce of everything. It’s kind of upsetting for me as well, because I don’t want to be involved in anything that corrupts boxing.

It hasn’t affected my mind-set going into this fight though and I’ve pretty much forgotten all about it now.

Is Jon-Lewis Dickinson a tougher test than Maccarinelli?

I would say he is, yes. Jon-Lewis Dickinson is hungry for it; he’s a good fighter.

He’s a very good stand up boxer. He likes to come forward and he looks like he’s got a bit of a punch on him. I’ve boxed tall boxers before though who’ve been 16 or 17 stones so it doesn’t really affect me much and I’ll just get on with it.

I’m expecting a hard fight, a 50-50 fight, but I still believe that I’ve got enough in the tank to win the British title again.

What do you bring to the table – what are your strengths?

I like to try and get in there and mix it up, try to take them out early, but we’re working on a few things in the gym now and hopefully you’ll see a different fighter than the one against Enzo Maccarinelli.

Have you learned anything from the Enzo fight to take into the Dickinson bout?

Yes, make sure the timekeeper’s not dyslexic! Also to be strong, fit and well on the day rather than going in there unfit.

You’re fighting on a huge card in front of thousands – how much are you looking forward to it?

It’s going to be the biggest arena I’ve ever fought in, so I’m really looking forward to it and have got a real buzz about it.

I’m very confident that I’m going to win. I want that belt back and to move on to bigger and better things. I know it’s going to be a hard fight but I’ve got the tools on the day to bring the belt back home.

How much would it mean to become British champion again?

It would mean the world again. Obviously I should never have lost it because of that timekeeper, so to get it back where it belongs will be amazing.

Lastly, what’s your big-fight prediction – who wins, David Price or Audley Harrison?

David Price, early! Harrison will be lucky to get to the third [round].

Look at the way he [Price] took [John] McDermott out, and McDermott’s one of the toughest blokes out there. Harrison’s got no chin, to be fair, and I think Price will take him out early.

For ticket information to see David Price defending his British heavyweight title against Audley Harrison at Liverpool’s Echo Arena on October 13, including an undercard featuring Shane McPhilbin versus Jon-Lewis Dickinson for the British cruiserweight belt, plus two other domestic title bouts


VIP Promotions’ ‘City Hall Showdown 4’, due to take place at Hull’s City Hall on September 28th, has been postponed and will now take place on November 2nd. The show was to be headlined by local favourite Tommy ‘Boom Boom’ Coyle, with Leeds’ Josh Warrington in chief supporting role, and looked to be a great opportunity for the unbeaten pair to make significant career strides.

Coyle was slated to face Spanish veteran Ruddy Encarnacion for the WBC International Silver lightweight title and, if successful, would have gate-crashed the world top 20 rankings. Warrington, meanwhile, was to contest his first title against Michael Ramabeletsa for the Masters featherweight strap.

“Basically the Spaniard pulled out and left us a bit stranded,” explained promoter Steve Wood. “We were looking to get a suitable replacement in but, with the number of opponent changes Tommy’s had for this show, we felt in the end it was best to rearrange it. Let’s not forget that, before this latest dropout, he’d prepared for four different opponents [Martin Gethin; Kieran Farrell; Carl Johanneson, and Tony Owen] who had all fallen by the wayside for one reason or another.

“Hopefully it’s all worked out well in the end though because Tommy’s now got a slot in Prizefighter on October 6th, and Josh is scheduled to box for the English title on November 9th. We’re now just working on getting an opponent approved by the WBC so that Tommy can still fight for their belt on the new Hull date in November.”

“I’m disappointed for the fans; there were a whole lot of people looking forward to it and I don’t like to disappoint anybody,” reiterated Tommy. “I’ve now got a great opportunity in Prizefighter though and, to be fair, all the fans in Hull understand. Everyone I’ve spoken to has said ‘you’ve got to do Prizefighter’, so they’ve all made me feel a lot better and they’re all looking forward to November 2nd. Hopefully too, with showcasing my ability on Sky Sports, it will raise my profile and a few more will come to the November show that weren’t going to originally.

“I’m very excited about Prizefighter and think I can do well. It’s Prizefighter at the end of the day and it’s a risk but so is crossing the road! I’ve got nothing to lose and everything to prove. I’m a young kid and I’ll come back better and stronger for it. I’ll go in there, box to the best of my ability and hopefully come out doing really well and put on some exciting performances. I’d like nothing more than to fight [Gary] Sykes, [Anthony] Crolla and Derry Matthews, in one way, shape or form. I genuinely think if you’re going to get a loss then it should be to the best. So, I’d love to fight those three in any order.”

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