Sillakh vs. Grachev on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights

On April 27, undefeated Light Heavyweight contenders Ismayl Sillakh (17-0, 14 KOs, No. 9, The Ring No. 10) and Denis “The Pirate” Grachev (11-0-1, 7 KOs) will meet in the 10-round main event on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights presented by Corona Extra. Friday’s show will air at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN2 HD, ESPN Deportes, and ESPN3 from Austin, Texas. The card is presented by Square Ring Promotions.

Friday Night Fights studio host Bernardo Osuna, filling in for Joe Tessitore, will be ringside with Teddy Atlas at the Frank Erwin Center describing the action. Todd Grisham, an anchor for ESPNEWS’ Highlight Express, MMA Live and SportsCenter, will fill in as studio host on ESPN2. On ESPN Deportes’ Viernes de Combates (Friday Night Fights), Alex Pombo and Delvin Rodriguez will call the fights with Leopoldo Gonzalez and Pablo Viruega in the studio.

Grisham will discuss the May 5 Floyd Mayweather-Miguel Cotto bout, including fighter interviews by Osuna, and Saturday’s Bernard Hopkins-Chad Dawson Light Heavyweight rematch.

Main Event:
Sillakh of California has won his last two fights by knockout. A victory Friday, will position him to fight the winner of the Hopkins-Dawson rematch. In March 2011, Sillakh won a 10-round decision against previously undefeated 2004 Cuban Olympian Yordanis Despaigne on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights.

“When you watch Ismayl float through the ring, you just can’t help but be reminded of Muhammad Ali - he floats like a butterfly and stings like a bee, too,” Sillakh’s manager Ivaylo Gotsev said. “He’s like this reincarnation of these old fighters that were so pretty to watch and had the passion for it. He loves what he’s doing and has an incredible passion for this sport.”

California’s Grachev, a former professional kick boxer, has won his last three fights, two against previously undefeated fighters. Grachev said of Friday’s fight, “I know a lot about Sillakh. He's a good, good fighter - strong, big amateur background. He's very good in his pro career, but I'm going to break him.”

(Watch ESPN’s Joe Tesstitore & Teddy Atlas preview Friday’s main event)


Undefeated Junior Lightweights Yaundale “Money Shot” Evans (16-0, 12 KOs) and Javier “El Abejon” Fortuna (18-0, 13 KOs) will meet in the 10-round co-feature. Evans, of Cleveland, is coming off a third-round TKO win over Andres Ledesma, while Fortuna of California won a 10-round unanimous decision over Miguel Roman in his last fight.

Follow ESPN’s Friday Night Fights on Twitter @ESPNFNF or like on Facebook.

Scott Cardle vs. Johnny Greaves on Friday

Team GB star following Sheffield blockbuster with a Big Bang in Liverpool

Scotty Cardle laces the gloves up for his second pro outing on Friday night as the Team GB star fights on the undercard of Tony Bellew’s British light heavyweight title defence against Danny McIntosh, live on Sky Sports 1HD.

Cardle made his pro bow on the undercard of Kell Brook’s welterweight showdown with Matthew Hatton in Sheffield on March 17 with a shutout points win over Sid Razak, and the Blackpool fighter was given the star treatment by promoter Eddie Hearn and Sky Sports.

The show was a huge hit with fight fans on Sky Sports, notching the highest non-pay-per-view viewing figures for boxing for the broadcaster, and the 22 year old was able to soak up the atmosphere with a full walk-on in front of the huge Steel City turn-out.

“I remember being in the changing rooms and someone coming in and saying ‘you’ve got the ring-walk’, and I was thinking ‘you’ve got to be kidding, it’s only my debut, I haven’t done enough to get a ring-walk!’” said Cardle. “Just coming out from the lights, and the reception I got alone was amazing, I was overwhelmed by that. There was an electric atmosphere in the arena it must’ve been great to watch on TV, I’m not surprised it got such high numbers on Sky Sports.”

Cardle was hot property as he decided to turn over to the paid ranks, and decided to sign with Matchroom Sport and Hearn after meeting with promoters across the country – and it’s a decision he feels has paid off already, with his Sheffield and Liverpool appearances preceding a spot on the undercard of Carl Froch’s IBF World super middleweight title fight with Lucian Bute in Nottingham on May 26.

“I couldn’t really ask for much more than the three dates that Eddie Hearn has given me,” said Cardle. “I’m in the big-time already. It’s just great to be part of all these big nights and be on the undercard of such great fights already. Tony Bellew’s a great fighter and his fan base is fantastic so Friday night is going to be a great occasion – I’ve got a lot of people coming to cheer me on too and I cannot wait to get in there and experience it all over again.

“I thought my debut went really well. The nerves building up to it were electric, but they were good nerves, I used them well in the fight. Now I’m just chomping at the bit for my next fight. The good thing is that it went well, it was an impressive win I hope. I hope I turned a few heads in the arena and now it’s onto bigger and better things in my next one.

“I knew what I was in for with Sid Razak. Sid’s a survivor, a very durable fighter so I that’s what I was expecting and that’s what I got from him. He did say to me after the fight that he was shocked that he stayed with me, shocked that he lasted the four rounds. He told me I was very strong and that he was glad he survived it because he had a fight the next week. I felt that I did buckle him a few times, but he’s a very tough guy and he well to handle me for the full four rounds, so I’ll give credit where it’s due.

“I’ve been in the ring more than 100 times as an amateur but I did think it was a big difference fighting as a pro. There’s no head guards so you get a much wider view firstly, but then because of that you can’t really relax, you can’t really sleep on the other boxer because any shot can be vital, any shot can be dangerous. So you’ve got to keep switched on at all times, that’s what I learnt. Obviously I didn’t really get hit that much by Sid but there were I think two occasions where I got clocked and that’s the thing, you just can’t relax on a boxer. You’ve got to keep your head on the job and keep your concentration.”


Tickets are priced at £30, £40, £60 and £80 with VIP tickets at £150.


Frank Warren Promotions has today launched a new website at The new website offers a slicker general interface, a more user friendly online box office and smoother navigation through video and photo content.

The Frank Warren Promotions website will still be available by clicking on the usual domain of, but users will be automatically re-directed to the shiny new .com website.

The new website will include the most up to date news and views, in depth boxer profiles, show schedules, results, photo galleries and videos from Britain’s number one boxing promoter.

In addition to all this, the new website offers a more comprehensive link with Frank Warren Promotions’ broadcast partner BoxNation, giving users the best opportunity to keep their finger on the pulse with UK’s only dedicated boxing channel.

For any questions or comments about the new website please contact

Article posted on 25.04.2012

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