Introducing Ultimate Boxxer: Isaac Macleod & Kaisee Benjamin

Undefeated boxer Isaac Macleod has more than just glory driving him to win Ultimate Boxxer on Friday 27th April at the Manchester Arena, he wants to keep the memory of his late brother Luke alive.

The date is also significant to Isaac as it’s on the day of Luke’s birthday, which he believes is his destiny to be crowned the Ultimate Boxxer.

Isaac admits he nearly hung up his gloves following Luke’s death in 2009 at just 19, but by continuing his career and becoming a champion will be a fitting tribute.

“Luke stayed over at his friend’s house and he never woke up,” said Macleod.

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“I was devastated. We were best mates as well as brothers. I was depressed and had to take a break from boxing. I’ve never been able to forget what I saw.

“I decided in the end that rather than quit boxing, I should carry on and fight for Luke’s memory.

“I’m sure it’s my destiny to win ‘Ultimate Boxxer.’ I just think it was meant to be.”

Ultimate Boxxer I pits eight undefeated welterweight fighters to go toe-to-toe in an exhilarating elimination tournament – backed by ambassadors Ricky Hatton, Anthony Crolla and Paulie Malignaggi – to win a cash prize from a pool of £50,000 – and the chance to become boxing’s newest star.

The event offers fans more that just boxing with live entertainment acts and celebrities at ringside to give a transformed boxing experience for the next generation.

Isaac believes that he will be the last man standing from the eight entrants and is likely to be the bookmaker’s favourite.

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The 23-year-old has an outstanding amateur pedigree having won European Youth Gold and World Youth Silver.

Unbeaten in all nine fights since turning professional, he said: “I’m a good, seasoned all-round fighter and I know how to win fights,”

“The others will think: ‘It’s three rounds, I have to go for broke’ and I’m just going to keep my cool and capitalise on their mistakes.

“I’m not worried about my rivals in Ultimate Boxxer, I’ll let them worry about me.”

This looks set to be a breakthrough year for Isaac after a frustrating start to his professional career – also a reason why Ultimate Boxxer was created to give pro fighters like Isaac, who don’t have the exposure, a golden opportunity to become a star.

Trained by Darnell Smith in Essex, Isaac is the mandatory challenger for the English welterweight title.

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“There’s not an awful lot of pro boxing in the North East,” he said, “and I haven’t really been able to show people what I can do yet.

“’Ultimate Boxxer’ is a fantastic concept and will raise my profile and then I’m looking to push on.

“The target is the world title and I think that’s the difference between me and the other lads in ‘Ultimate Boxxer.  I’m aiming for the top.”

 

BIO-FILE
Age:
23
Pro-record: 9-0-0 (3 KO’s)
Amateur pedigree: Won 60 of 69 bouts, including gold at the European Youth championship and silver at the World Youth championship
Trainer: Darnell Smith
Cutman: “Tony or Peter Sims.”
Strengths: Slick skills and boxing IQ. He’s only 23 – but has been boxing for a long time.
Weaknesses: Gets dragged into fights and has been cut
Punch power: The nickname is ‘Can Bang’ and he’s a stiff hitter with both hands
Speed: Sharp hands and feet
Stamina:  Unproven, but fought five times in seven days during his amateur career

 

THINGS YOU DIDN’T KNOW
Walk on music:
“Only Fools Rush In, the Sunderland FC anthem.”
Football team: “Sunderland.”
Personal & Family life: “I’ve got two sisters and six brothers.”
Music: “Relaxing stuff like Bob Marley and Tracy Chapman, stuff that relaxes me and takes my mind off boxing.”
Fashion: “Jeans and T shirt.”
Shoes: “Trainers.”
Toughest moment: “The hardest thing for me has been the lack of opportunities since I turned pro. I have been wanting to push on and show what I can do, but haven’t had the chance and Ultimate Boxxer will give me that.”
Best moment: “Coming to Essex and starting to train with Darnell Smith.”
Aspirations: “To be a world champion. That’s the difference between me and the other lads in Ultimate Boxxer.”
Nutrition: “I have a nutritionist who looks after me. Every meal is calculated so I have the exact amount of calories. It’s all fish and chicken and sometimes I have a vegan diet.”
Family Make-up: “I’ve got a big family. I lost my older brother, Luke, in 2009. We were best mates and it hit me hard.”

 

Q&A
What got you into boxing?
“Growing up, I was always fighting my brother and watching the ‘Rocky’ films. I always wanted to fight.”
Who was your favourite fighter? “Manny Pacquiao. He went from the very bottom to the top. He proved anything’s possible.”
Amateur record and achievements? “69 bouts, 60 wins. I won European Junior gold and World Junior silver and was part of the Great Britain Development squad.”
What are your best assets as a fighter? “I can adapt. Whatever anyone brings, I can do it better.”
What do you know about other fighters in Ultimate Boxxer? “I will let them worry about me. I’m confident in my abilities and
Goals in boxing? “The world title.”
Who would you like to fight after UB? “I’m mandatory for the English title, so I guess that will be next. I want the fights that let me show people how good I am. Ultimate Boxxer is perfect for me.”
Nickname? “Isaac ‘Can Bang’ Macleod. My lass gave me the name!”
Favourite TV show? “I used to watch Jeremy Kyle all the time, but now I’m addicted to ‘Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares.’”
Favourite meal when not in camp? “Thai food.”
Hobbies? “I’ve got a couple of close friends I like to go and see and we sometimes go to watch the football.”

 

Today’s Ultimate Boxxer contender Kaisee Benjamin explains how his brains (a little beauty)  and admiration for Vasyl Lomachenko will take him to crowning glory in Ultimate Boxxer.

ULTIMATE BOXXER I will take place at the Manchester Arena on April 27. Tickets are available from ultimateboxxer.com

- British Boxing
Birmingham’s Kaisee Benjamin KO’d everyone enroute to the ABA Novice final with his pro debut resulting in the same fashion. Often switching stances, Kaisee is highly unpredictable. Follow his journey @ultimateboxxer as all roads lead to the Manchester Arena on 27th April 2018.
- British Boxing
Boxing brainbox Kaisee Benjamin aims to show fight fans that he’s the new Vasyl Lomachenko when he competes in Ultimate Boxxer I at the Manchester Arena on Friday 27th April.

The MENSA member will put his head-scratching skills to the test in boxing’s new edge-of-your-seat tournament that brings together eight undefeated welterweights who contest for a prize pool of £50,000 and the chance to break through as boxing’s newest star.

Celebrities will be at ringside and big music acts will perform on an exciting new concept merging boxing with entertainment to bring a new generation of fans to the sport.

The winner of three, three-round fights will win the top prize – and 22-year-old Benjamin from Birmingham says he will be taking a few of Lomachenko’s moves into the ring with him.

The brilliant Ukrainian is near the top of most pound-for-pound lists and aims to become a three-weight world champion in only his twelfth fight when he challenges WBA World lightweight boss Jorge Linares next month.

Benjamin, who also mixes beauty with his brains by working as a part-time model, said, “I have my own unique style, but people have said there are bits of Lomachenko in my boxing,”

“I do watch a lot of boxing on You Tube. I see it as a good way of adding to my boxing IQ. I see what works for the great fighters and look to add it to my boxing,”

“I like to be unpredictable. I like to improvise, the way Lomachenko does, and I don’t think anyone really wants to fight someone like me, as my rivals in Ultimate Boxxer will find out,”

“I’ve got the skills – and I’ve also got the heart as well. I can stand and fight if I have to. Sam Eggington will tell you that. Sam doesn’t pull his punches when we spar. We’ve had some real wars,”

“I’ve shown I can do the fancy stuff on the small-hall shows, but now it’s time to take it to the big stage on Ultimate Boxxer,”

Benjamin and Eggington are stablemates at the Eastside gym and chief Jon Pegg has said that Benjamin “can be a big name.”

“This is a massive opportunity for me,” Said Benjamin.

“I have been told that I’m an entertainer and the crowd get involved when I box and I’m looking forward to putting on a good show for the fans.”

Tickets for the show are available from Benjamin’s Instagram and Twitter pages, kaisee_official

 

BIO FILE
Age:
22
Record: 4-0-0 (1 KO)
Amateur pedigree: Won 20 of 25 amateur bouts, won the ABA Novice championship boxing for Eastside ABC.
Trainer: Paul Counihan.
Cutman: Jon Pegg.
Strengths: Is a real box of tricks, very hard for opponents to read. He says there are traces of Vasyl Lomachenko in his boxing. He switches stances, throws punches from everywhere and can punch with both hands.
Weaknesses: Has a risky but exciting style of boxing – he drops his hands and switches stances.
Punch power: On his pro debut, he flattened tough-as-old-boots Paul Cummings and as an amateur, he had a puncher’s reputation.
Speed:  Has quick hands and good feet.
Stamina: Untested. Has yet to get out of second gear in his pro career yet. He stopped his debut opponent and has dominated a pair of experienced journeymen who couldn’t fathom him out.
Anything else: Is a member of MENSA for people with high IQs – and works as a part-time model. Knocked out all his opponents on his way to the final of the ABA Novice championship in 2015. Didn’t knock out his final opponent, but dropped him on the way to a wide points win. Coaches at the Eastside gym regard him as one of their best prospects.

 

THINGS YOU DIDN’T KNOW
Football team: “Birmingham City. We are all Blues fans at the Eastside gym and I go to watch them when I can.”
Personal & Family life:
“I’ve got a younger brother and a younger sister. They are both at college and I’m clever myself. I’m a member of MENSA and a junior chess champion.”
Music: “I like rap and UK hip hop.”
Fashion: “I dress to impress!”
Toughest moment: “So far, the ABA Novice championship final, that was tough, but dropping the lad in the last few seconds of that final. I knew then I had won the fight and the title.”
Best moment: “Being selected to enter Ultimate Boxxer and the chance to become a big name,”
Aspirations: “The world title is the plan, but I have to work my way up. I’ve got to win Ultimate Boxxer, then move on.”
Nutrition – “I try to eat and drink as healthily as I can.”

 

Q&A
What got you into boxing? “My stepdad, Mark Williams, was a pro cruiserweight and he took me to the gym when I was 10 years old.”
Who was your favourite fighter? “Vasyl Lomachenko is my favourite fighter now. People say there’s a bit of him in my boxing.”
Amateur record and achievements? “I won 20 of 25 bouts and won the Novices.”
Who’s the best boxer you have sparred? “Sam Eggington. We’ve had some real wars and that will prepare me for anything in Ultimate Boxxer.”
What are your best assets as a fighter? “I’m unpredictable and I’ve got a big heart. Sam (Eggington) will tell you I’ve got a big heart.”
What do you know about your Ultimate Boxxer rivals? “They are all unbeaten, they will all think they can win it and the best man will come out on top. It’s going to be a good night.”
Goals in boxing? “To win the world title.”
Favourite TV show? “Game of Thrones.”
Favourite meal when not in camp? “I like a Chinese.”
Hobbies? “Having a kickabout with my mates and going to watch Birmingham City.”

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