Charlie Edwards admits his ultimate ambition is to become “an all-time great in British boxing” as he begins his WBC World title reign against Spain’s Angel Moreno at London’s Copper Box Arena on March 23, live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US.
The 25-year-old Croydon talent is thrilled to be making the first defence of his Flyweight crown at the top of a stacked card featuring rising Light-Heavy star Joshua Buasti battling for the British title against Liam Conroy and Cruiserweight rivals Lawrence Okolie and Wadi Camacho colliding for the British and Commonwealth straps.
“Headlining my own show is a dream come true in itself,” said Edwards. “I’m incredibly thankful to Eddie Hearn and Adam Smith for giving me this opportunity. There’s some great fighters and matchups on my undercard. I feel really luck and blessed. I’ve also got former GB teammates on the show as well. There’s something for everyone so it can’t disappoint.
Edwards ripped the famous green belt from Cristofer Rosales on an emotional night at The O2 in London in December, outclassing the Nicaraguan with a masterful display to take a well-earned unanimous decision.
Now he is eager to start the next chapter of his career, setting himself the target of winning a World title at another weight class, with potential World title clashes with British rival Kal Yafai and Srisaket Sor Rungvisai laying ahead at Super-Flyweight.
“First and foremost, I’ve got to focus 100% on Angel Moreno, he’s a top-class operator and a hard fight. He’s a very tough and game fighter who will be coming to steal my title from me. He’s a mature man and he doesn’t shy away from any opportunities. We’ve sparred 24 rounds together and on the night it’s going to heat up nicely.
“But I believe, and I’ll put it out there, this is my time. Timing is everything and it’s all come right. All the other fights, they will unfold in the future. I’m ready now to fight anyone and everyone. I’m in this game to build a legacy. I don’t want to pick and choose my opponents.
“I want to be a British great, and to be a British great I want to be a multi-weight World Champion, and this new book, it starts now. The hard work really starts now, and it’s about dedicating myself. I’m obsessed with the game, obsessed with getting better, day in, day out. I want to be known as an all-time great in British boxing.”
Lewis Ritson has moved up in weight to the Super-Lightweight division and will make his debut at 140lbs when he takes on Argentina’s German Argentino Benitez for the WBA Inter-Continental title at the Copper Box Arena on March 23, live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US.
Ritson ripped the British Lightweight title from Robbie Barrett in seven rounds before making a series of devastating quickfire defences against Joe Murray, Scott Cardle and Paul Hyland Jnr to win the famous belt outright.
The 25-year-old Geordie ace makes the jump up to 140lbs after tasting defeat for the first time when he was outpointed by Franceso Patera in a battle for the European Lightweight crown at the Metro Radio Arena in October.
With an extra 5lbs to play with, the ‘Sandman’ is confident he will be even more destructive at his new weight and is itching to begin his assault on the Super-Lightweight division in London next week.
“Now is the right time to move up to 140lbs,” said Ritson. “I probably should have moved up in weight a while ago but I was determined to test myself on the European scene which is why I carried on. There’s no excuses from me though about the last fight.”
“I’ve watched the Patera fight back once and I won’t be doing so again. It was a terrible performance and some of the mistakes I made on the night are inexcusable, but you live and learn.
“Fanno (coach Neil Fannon) said if I don’t get him out of there in the first half of the fight it would be a hard night’s work but I went in there with the mentality of just blasting him away early, like I had done to the previous couple of opponents which was wrong. It’s opened my eyes and we’ve been working on my all round game since.
“You’ll see a different Lewis Ritson with the extra 5lbs to play with. The power will be more telling, we were surprised boiling down to make 135lbs I was getting good kids out of there in that fashion. But that shows I have natural power, which will only show with the extra weight.
“To be fighting for the WBA Inter-Continental title opens some doors right away with a win. I didn’t want to be fighting in a six or eight rounder just to feel in to the new weight, or fighting at Commonwealth or British level. That’s no disrespect to the lads up in this weight, but I’ve got the British title on my Dad’s mantlepiece so I don’t really want to be going over old ground.
“I’m a million miles away from a World title at the minute, but will be keeping an eye on the Hughes vs. Davies Jnr fight. The European title is something I failed to win, so I would be open to fighting for it down the line if it made sense for all parties.
“Generally, it’s a really open division – I’ve sparred WBA World Champion Kiryl Relikh before and after seeing Maurice Hooker’s last performance I wouldn’t shy away from those if they cropped up down the line. A couple of wins and I could be in the frame which sets me up for a really exciting year.”
Undefeated Middleweight talent Jason Quigley has been added to the undercard of Charlie Edward’s maiden WBC Flyweight World title defence against Angel Moreno at London’s Copper Box Arena on March 23, screened live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US.
The Dominic Ingle-trained fighter, based in Sheffield, makes his first appearance in the UK as a professional on a stacked card that features former Olympians Joshua Buatsi and Lawrence Okolie in title action, as well as the return of Newcastle powerhouse Lewis Ritson.
A highly-touted former Irish amateur star, Quigley holds a perfect record of 15 wins from 15 fights, with 11 of those wins coming by knockout, since turning over in 2014 and is expected to do big things in the pro game.
From County Donegal, Quigley, the current NABF Middleweight Champion, is delighted to be fighting so close to home after basing himself in America for the early part of his pro career.
“I’m excited to make my UK debut in London,” said Quigley. “I know my fans at home are going to be thrilled that they have a short distance to travel for this one. It’s great to get a chance to fight in London and fight so close to home for me. I’m very grateful to Golden Boy Promotions and Matchroom Boxing for working together to give me the chance to fight on this show.”
Quigley features on a huge night of boxing at the Copper Box Arena.
Main event sees Croydon’s Charlie Edwards make the first defence of his WBC Flyweight World title against Spain’s Angel Moreno.
Rising Light-Heavyweight star Joshua Buatsi takes on former English Champion Liam Conroy for the vacant British title in his tenth fight.
London Cruiserweight rivals Lawrence Okolie and Wadi Camacho collide with the British and Cruiserweight titles on the line.
Geordie ace Lewis Ritson makes his debut at 140lbs as he takes on Argentina’s German Argentino Benitez for the WBA Inter-Continental title.
Watford Bantamweight talent Shannon Courtenay makes her highly-anticipated professional debut and Newport Bantamweight talent Sean McGoldrick fights for the first time under new trainer Jamie Moore.
Sean McGoldrick says he is feeling revitalised after teaming up with BBBofC 2018 Trainer of the Year Jamie Moore at the V.I.P Gym in Astley, Wigan.
The 2010 Commonwealth gold medallist fights for the first time under his new trainer in a six round Super-Bantamweight contest against Liverpool’s Sean Cairns at the Copper Box Arena on March 23, and the 7-0 Newport talent believes a good showing in London will strengthen his title credentials.
“I felt like I needed a change,” said McGoldrick. “I went to see Jamie and clicked with him straight away. Everything in the gym has been going really well. We’re gelling on the pads and he’s already taught me lots of little things that have improved my game. Hopefully I can display everything that I’ve learnt when I face Sean Cairns on March 23.
“Both Jamie and Nigel Travis are fantastic coaches and I’m confident they can help me achieve what I want to achieve in boxing. The gym standard is high and it makes me want to raise and improve my performances. I like to sit back and watch the other guys in the gym spar. I’m always picking up on the little things they do differently. I feel like I’m learning off all of them too.
“I definitely have a new lease of life. I’m excited to go to the gym and I’m always looking forward to the next session with all of the boys. Everyone trains really hard and pushes each other on. It’s a happy place to train and I feel like I’m in a great place.
“I have to earn the right to fight for titles. Hopefully I can put on a solid performance at the Copper Box and that will push my name up there for title opportunities. I want to be pushing towards titles but I understand that I’ve got to earn these opportunities, I can’t just expect them. That being said, I’ve got a great team behind me and a title shot at the back end of the year isn’t unrealistic.”