Darren Barker thanks fans for ‘overwhelming response’; Greene stops Johnson

Darren Barker has thanked fight fans for the ‘overwhelming response’ after his fantastic performance in his fight with middleweight king Sergio Martinez in Atlantic City on Saturday night. The 29 year-old returned to England on Monday after he announced his arrival at World class Middleweight level by taking the fight to the Argentine and answering a number of critics with a fantastic performance before Martinez dug deep to finally get on top in the 11th round and end Barker’s dream.

“The number of messages I’ve received on my phone and on Twitter has been overwhelming,” said Barker. “Everyone has been incredibly supportive and the support that I have had from the amazing British fans, along with my family and my team, has eased the pain.

“I’m still devastated by the defeat as I felt great in camp, in the changing room and in the ring and even though I was written off from day one – we all believed we could do it.

“After eight rounds I felt so in control and felt I had the beating of him. I knew it was tight but knew I would need to win the last few rounds to be in the mix so tried to do so and came unstuck. I could have survived and lost on points but that's not what I'm about and that's not what boxing is about. I'm looking forward to the rest and hopefully we can manufacture another shot in the New Year.”

Barker’s promoter Eddie Hearn says work will begin right away on Barker’s next step and he hopes to capitalise on the Londoner’s big night in Atlantic City to get him another bite at a major title.

“It was just an incredible performance,” said Hearn. “Nobody gave Darren a shot. I would say it was at times disrespectful but when you look at the task, he was putting it on the line against one of boxing's all time greats and matched him on so many different levels.

“Darren came to win and that's what eventually lead to the stoppage. He tried to WIN, not survive and we should all embrace that. Darren would have beaten any Middleweight in the World but Martinez. He is a credit to himself, his family and this wonderful sport, he is the reason Matchroom returned to boxing and I am so proud to be his promoter.

“The real work starts now. He has made a huge name for himself and I will get him another shot in 2012 but for now we should get behind him for putting it all on the line.”

Joe Greene Returns with Impressive Knockout against Pete Johnson

Junior middleweight contender "Mean" Joe Greene (23-1, 15 KOs) returned to action on Saturday by scoring a TKO 6 over durable veteran William "Pete" Johnson. Fighting at the Grand Ballroom at Fitzgerald's Hotel & Casino in Tunica, Mississippi, Greene showed no rust from his time off, throwing over 100 punches per round and finally getting the TKO at 2:16.

It was the perfect tune-up for Greene who was making his first appearance since suffering his first loss in June 2010, a unanimous decision against Vanes Martirosyan.

"Joe looked sensational tonight and showed no ring rust whatsoever. He was in terrific shape and looked as sharp as ever against a tough guy who was determined to make the final bell," said Greene's promoter, Greg Cohen of Greg Cohen Promotions. "We couldn't be happier with his performance. Clearly, he's got his focus back and is once again an extremely dangerous threat to any other junior middleweight in the world."

Cohen says the 25-year-old southpaw will head back to the gym immediately to continue training.

"Joe is hungry again and you just can't keep him out of the gym. He's ready to show the world what he's truly made of. We'll sit down with him and his people and decide if another tune-up fight is needed or if we'll just start talking to some of the other top contenders and champions in the division about getting in the ring with him. 2012 is going to be a great year for Joe, but not so much for his opponents."


Big-time boxing is set to hit the Highlands for the first time on Friday, December 2.

Local heroes Gary Cornish, Andrew Young and Alastair Chisholm will headline the event at the Drumossie Hotel in Inverness.

Six foot seven inch heavyweight hope Cornish has already racked up three victories (two by knockout) since turning professional earlier this year and impressed fans and pundits alike when beating Lithuanian Rolandas Cesna in Aberdeen last month.

Former Commonwealth games bronze medallist Young returns to ring for the first time two years at cruiserweight looking for a third win in four fights, whilst welterweight Chisholm will be aiming to keep his 100% record in his second contest.

Promoter Chris Gilmour said: “It’s hard to believe that the Highlands has never hosted professional boxing, but that will change in Inverness on December 2.

“I’m very excited about the show and I’m sure boxing fans will be too because I believe we will see three fine prospects in action.

“Gary has really grabbed everyone’s attention – and not just because he’s six foot seven inches tall! He’s at the very early stages of his professional career, but he has already impressed everyone who has seen him in action as he looks to have all the tools to finally end Scotland’s long wait for a champion in the heavyweight division.

“Andrew was one of the world’s top amateurs, but he has suffered with injury since he turned pro and hasn’t had as many fights as he would have hoped for, but he’s now back in top condition and raring to go.

“Alastair turned professional at the St Andrew’s Sporting Club in Glasgow in June and was very impressive against a vastly more experienced opponent. We have high hopes for him and I’m sure he’ll be looking forward to boxing in front of a hometown audience this time.

“Scottish boxing is in its healthiest state for years and the Highlands is a real hotbed for stars of the future, so it will be good for these up and comers to showcase themselves on their own doorsteps.”

Tickets are priced at £1000 for a table of ten or £100 per person and include a champagne reception and three-course dinner. Contact Laura on 07769 697899 / for further information.

Article posted on 03.10.2011

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