31.08.05 – Promoter Frank Warren has lined up another cracking headline fight to top the DebRA-Sports Network event on Friday 23 September at the Hilton Hotel Park Lane. Following Matthew Hatton’s withdrawal yesterday from the charity fund-raising event, in which his fight against Ross Minter was for the Vacant English Welterweight title, Warren moved quickly to draft in Belfast puncher Neil Sinclair to challenge Commonwealth Light-Middleweight Champion Ossie Duran to ensure an explosive main event fight..
Duran, a teak-tough Ghanaian who hails out of the legendary boxing capital of Accra, has already crushed current British champion Jamie Moore in three rounds last June.
In addition, he defeated recent David Barnes conqueror Joshua Okine in December 2003 to win the Vacant Commonwealth Welterweight title and stopped Sinclair’s stable mate Glenn McClarnon in two rounds in February 2003.
“I am delighted to come back to Britain and make the first defence of my title,” said the 28-year-old.
He added, “This is a great chance for me to exhibit my skills again in front of the British fight fans again and they will not be disappointed,”
“I am well aware of Sinclair and of the reputation he has built as a big puncher but I am not worried about it all,”
“I have worked hard to get to this position and intend to beat Sinclair as it will open doors for me on the world scene.”
Sinclair is one of the hardest hitters in British boxing with 23 knockouts from 28 wins.
An outright winner of the British Welterweight title, Sinclair is confident of taking his first step up to the light-middleweight division.
The 31-year-old said, “For the last couple of years I’ve been struggling at welterweight so the move up a division is definitely for the better,”
“I more comfortable and relaxed at this weight and I have not lost any power and by the way I’m punching now I feel I can knock out any light-middle in the world,”
“I was at Duran’s fight against Jamie Moore and I know just how dangerous a fighter he is and I would be a fool not to respect him,”
“One things for sure, I won’t be sticking my chin out and I will be stick to my boxing until the opening comes up,”
Sinclair finished by saying, “Thanks to Frank Warren for getting me the opportunity to fight Duran for the title and now it’s down to me to win and move back into the world title frame.”
The Sports Network show will assist DebRA, who help promote research into the cause, nature, treatment and cure of the skin genetic disorder Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB) to raise the initial funding to develop the worlds first clinical research centre for EB at The Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London.