Spartacus and Oakey headline SENIBOX

10.05.07 - Hennessy Sports are bringing their hallmark brand of competitive championship boxing to the ‘seni07 Combat Sports Show’ at ExCeL London in Docklands with ‘SENI:BOX,’ the launch event of the three-day showcase of Combat Sports, Martial Arts and Extreme Fitness that debuts in the Capital..

Fittingly, the bill on May 18th will feature a raft of local talent in addition to the headline clash between Ipswich’s Steve Spartacus and Portsmouth’s Tony Oakey for the vacant British Light Heavyweight Title.

The intention had been for Morden’s Lenny Daws to top the bill in a Championship affair. A match with Chad Brisson for the Commonwealth Title had been made, but despite initially indicating he wanted the fight, the Canadian became the first in a long line of potential opponents to turn down the opportunity to fight ‘Lightning.’

With London based Spartacus already appearing on the bill in a Title fight, the clash against Oakey was a natural. The Portsmouth fighter is in prime condition as he had been training to challenge for the British Title a fortnight ago, only for former champion Peter Oboh to walk out of the venue on the night without lacing a glove. Oboh was subsequently stripped.

“In the circumstances, it made perfect sense to make Spartacus-Oakey,” explained promoter Mick Hennessy. “It keeps a title that has been very stagnant active. It could kick-start the division. There are a lot of competitive fights that could be made at 12st 7lb.

“It’s an excellent contest between two known, come-forward fighters with big followings and big hearts. It’s been on the cards for a while. It’s going to be a cracking night to kick off the 3-day event. The venue is going to look fantastic and there should be a great atmosphere.”

This will be added to by the supporters of the London talent on the undercard, including Daws, English Light Heavyweight Champion Peter Haymer and former European Title challenger David Walker.

Daws will now appear over ten rounds in his first contest since dropping a razor-thin and controversial decision to Barry Morrison in a defence of his domestic title at the Alexandra Palace in January.

“I’m itching to make my return,” said ‘Lightning,’ who will be roared on by his ever-loyal ‘Morden Massive.’ “I want to prove to everyone that I am still at the top of my game.

“I want to get back in there and kick start the process of winning my title back. The fight against Morrison was just a bad day at the office. It was a bit of a learning curve.

“I started off slowly and by the time I got going it was too late. He had opened a lead on the scorecards and got into a bit of a rhythm. It won’t happen again and I would love the rematch.

“I don’t even think about that fight anymore. I just want to get out there and get on with it. Now I have the chance to do that on the launch night of what looks like being a big weekend for London.”

English light heavyweight champion Peter Haymer, who was originally to have fought Spartacus, will still defend on the show against an opponent to be named shortly.

Several other Championship level operators will feature. Former ABA champion Matthew Thirlwall, who scored one of the knock outs of the year in one of the fights of 2006 when stopping Donovan Smilie in an English Title eliminator, boxes over eight.

Wanstead Lightweight Dave Stewart - who recently won an eliminator for the Commonwealth title being contested by Willie Limmond and Amir Khan - continues his rapid progression towards another title opportunity, whilst West Ham’s Mickey Steeds returns at cruiserweight after a shot at the British Heavyweight Title.

Another popular fighter from East London, George Hillyard, will also bring a legion of fans.

As will ‘Kid Dynamite’ David Walker, one of London’s most popular campaigners of recent years. The former British and European title challenger - once labelled ‘Britain’s most exciting fighter’ - returns at welterweight.

‘SENI:BOX’ will take place in the ‘Toe 2 Toe Arena,’ a purpose built 3500-seater tiered venue that will also play host to several events over the weekend including an ABA Amateur Boxing Challenge, a Mixed Martial Arts promotion and ‘Pain and Glory,’ which brings several top international fighters together across a mix of disciplines.

These tournaments are just one component of seni07. A 12,000 square metre adjacent exhibition area will house a cutting edge expo dedicated to the fighting arts throughout the Saturday and Sunday.

As the industry's annual acknowledged meeting place, seni gives you the opportunity to discover the people behind the latest products, try goods before you buy, and witness the hundreds of displays and demonstrations by exhibitors across five themed show zones: Classical Warrior, Fightsport, Survival, Tournament and Olympic Youth.

For more information and the latest bill please visit Tickets for SENI:BOX, priced £30, £40 and £75 are available on 0870 060 1795. For more information on seni07 please visit

Article posted on 10.05.2007

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