In the short hours leading up to tonight’s big triple championship boxing bill at local venue The Metrodome, the town of Barnsley, England has been flooded with fans who have invaded “The Tarn” for the European super bantamweight title rematch between reigning champion Rendall Munroe and the man he beat for the title, Kiko “La Sensacion” Martinez. The crowds in Barnsley are split between various camps as the Munroe faithful from Leicester mingle with Martinez’s small but passionate contingent from Spain along with the vocal supporters of popular undercard combatants such as 2008 Olympic Bronze Medallist Tony Jeffries, who will be making his much anticipated professional debut..
The fans have given the local economy a much needed shot in the arm and considerably livened up the nightlife in this South Yorkshire town, located 30 miles east of Manchester and roughly between a triangle formed by Sheffield, Leeds and Doncaster.
While “Boxing Binman” Munroe, 17-1 (8), started out a sizable favorite to turn back the dangerous Martinez, 20-1 (15), once again, the odds have lowered considerably with whispers of the big punching Spaniard flattening durable veterans during sparring sessions since recently arriving in England.
With a possible world title opportunity awaiting the winner of this European title bout, competition is expected to be fierce in this mouth-watering rematch.
In another red-hot matchup on the bill, Commonwealth light welterweight champion Ajose Olusegun, 25-0 (12), will almost certainly be pushed hard in his title defense against towering English beltholder “Super” Scott Haywood, 19-2 (4), in a contest that could steal the show.
Defending the Commonwealth crown and a number six ranking in the WBC as well, “The Nigerian Nailer” has the difficult assignment of not only defeating the very awkward six footer Haywood but to look good while doing so in hopes of gaining a shot at the winner of the upcoming Timothy Bradley vs. Kendall Holt 140 pound WBC/WBO unification bout.
The vacant Celtic lightweight title will be up for grabs in a showdown between busy Welshman Gary “Dynamo” Buckland and Scottish hard man Craig Docherty, in a true crossroads fight.
Buckland, 14-1 (5), previously held the title until giving it up for a brief foray at light welter while former Commonwealth super feather champion Docherty, 22-4-1 (9), is looking to regain the form that saw him narrowly miss winning the European title.
As the first of Britain’s highly successful Beijing Olympic contingent to step into a professional boxing ring, Tony Jeffries will look to make a big splash against Minsk based spoiler Aliaksander Vayavoda, 5-12-1 (3), who has already upset four promising novices in his homeland of Belarus.
The buzz around Jeffries is immense as the former amateur light heavyweight made the surprising announcement that he will drop down to campaign as a super middleweight along with another Olympic Bronze Medallist in promoter Frank Maloney’s stable, Irish sensation Darren Sutherland.
The undercard bouts are full of promise with a quartet of six rounders on tap.
A light middleweight clash pits experienced Leicester stylist Kevin Concepcion, 14-1 (3), against hard punching Sheffield slugger Jezz Wilson, 5-0 (4), while Irish super bantam champ Paul Hyland, 13-1 (4), will swap punches with granite-jawed Ukrainian journeyman Nikita Lukin, 8-16-2 (2), who has never been stopped.
In a pair of prospect battles, light welter Jamie Way, 8-0 (1), of Newport, Wales comes to grips with Derby based Dave “Rocky” Ryan, 7-1 (1), while flashy bantam Ross Burkinshaw, 5-1-1 (3), shoots it out with Liverpool’s Mike Robinson, 4-0 (0).
In a four rounder, six foot Huddersfield teenager Tyrone Nurse, 5-0 (0), scraps with Coventry veteran Baz Carey, 11-39-4 (3), at lightweight and Derby flyweight Usman Ahmed, 4-1-1 (0), will also make an appearance on the bill.
Frank Maloney Promotions presents Rendall Munroe vs. Kiko Martinez for the Super Bantamweight Championship of Europe with full supporting undercard at the Metrodome in Barnsley, England on Friday, February 27, 2009.
Tickets are priced at £75 and £35 and are available by logging onto www.frankmaloney.com or by calling the Box Office at 0871 226 1508.
Sky Sports will televise the action live on SS1 starting at 10PM.
Gunn destroys Gregory in Four to Win NABA Cruiserweight Title; Has Sights Set on The Elite!
Lyndhurst, NJ – After last night’s beatdown of Brad Gregory, Bobby “The Celtic Warrior” Gunn showed that he is as determined as ever for a crack at an elite fighter.
“I am so hungry for another shot”, said Gunn, who has been impatiently waiting to challenge for a title since he was stopped prematurely against then WBO champion Enzo Maccarinelli in 2007. “I’ve been in this boxing game a long time and have paid my dues. I am a seasoned veteran who will be highly ranked in the WBA and WBC shortly, so the champions will have no excuses to avoid me.
Gunn 21-3-1 (18 KO’s) handled Gregory start to finish, dropping him twice in the fourth round which forced referee Brian O’Melia to call the one sided affair to a halt. With the victory, Gunn became the new WBA-NABA Cruiserweight champion while retaining his WBC-USNBC title in the process. Gunn was pleased with his victory, especially considering the circumstances which he feared were going to throw him off his game.
“I became severely sick in the middle of last week”, said Gunn who is still battling a fever, which made his most crucial days of training excessively difficult. “If I didn’t fight with heart, I would have lost no question about it”. “I definitely have to think God because without him, I wouldn’t have made it”.
Atop Gunn’s most wanted list is WBC champion Giacobbe Fragomeni and WBA titleholder Guillermo Jones. Gunn is prepared to stamp his passport anywhere around the world to get another shot.
“In all honesty, I want to fight Fragomeni so badly I can’t even explain it”, said Gunn, who fought in the main event last night at Medieval Times. “Our styles compliment each other so whether we fought in New Jersey or Italy, the fans will get a great fight”. “Guillermo Jones on the other hand is a fighter I have a ton of respect for because he has fought all over the world much like I have”. It doesn’t matter who I face, when or where the fight is, all I know is that I am ready”, said the former IBA champion.
Utsey Boys Relocate To Atlanta Georgia
The Utsey Boys, Orlando and Justin Utsey, have relocated to Atlanta Georgia . Set to make their pro debuts in the very near future, Orlando and Justin Utsey are leaving their home area in order to concentrate on training and leave behind the distractions of their hometown. They will however still consider Little Rock Arkansas their boxing home, and look to bring some great fights back to their many fans in the Little Rock Area. “We feel like we have a great opportunity in Atlanta . We need to focus right now and the situation for us in Little Rock is that we’re always around family and friends which is great, but it’s almost like a constant party atmosphere. We appreciate everybody here, but we need to concentrate on the basics right now and that’s getting ready to fight” said Orlando Utsey.
These boxing brothers have put together fantastic amateur careers. The 22 year old Orlando Utsey compiled an impressive 113 wins and 5 loss amateur record winning 4 Arkansas State Golden Glove titles along the way in the 141 and 152 lb. weight classes. Justin Utsey, who is 19 years old, compiled an impressive 58-12 amateur record and picked up 5 Arkansas Silver Glove titles in the 119 and 125 lb. weight classes. Now as they prepare to make their professional debuts there is nothing these talented young gentlemen can’t accomplish “I’m very excited to make my pro debut. This is definitely an opportunity that is going to open up a lot of doors for us” said Justin Utsey.
As if their amateur credentials were not enough to warrant a lot of interest in the Utsey Boys, these guys are very talented and accomplished musicians as well. They are both up and coming rappers known in the music industry as Ferious and Black Ice. Not only are they rapping, but they also write their own lyrics as well “I love to write. I feel like I can express myself better in writing than I can in actual conversation” said Justin Utsey a.k.a. Black Ice. Fans can expect to get some musical entertainment from the Utsey Boys when they fight. According to Orlando Utsey a.k..a. Ferious “we definitely want to use our fights as opportunities to get our music out. We’re planning to have our own music as our entrance songs, and after our fights we’re going to put together some celebration shows for our fans. Utsey Boys shows won’t stop when the fights are over, they’ll continue long into the night.”
Now with a solid team behind them, the Utsey Boys are preparing to start a new wave in the sports and entertainment industry. These two are not only very talented, but they are very intelligent as well. They know the value of being marketable in several different areas, and are definitely looking to be crossover superstars. “We’re going to use our boxing careers to springboard our music careers, and our music careers to springboard our boxing careers” said the very confident Utsey Boys. The rest of this story has yet to be written, but success is definitely in the future here. Ladies and gentlemen move over as the Utsey Boys prepare to take center stage!