UK Boxing: Matthew Hall; Kotelnik Ready For Khan, Chris Edwards


Matthew Hall says he’ll make his childhood dreams come true by winning a Lonsdale belt against Anthony Small on June 27. And the hard-hitting Mancunian says he’ll keep up his run of recent KO wins by halting his London rival inside 10 rounds. Commonwealth light-middleweight champion Hall will put his title on line against Hall at the O2 Arena, with the British title up for grabs as well. The mouth-watering fight is part of the supporting card to Amir Khan’s WBA light-welterweight title challenge against Andreas Kotelnik..

And it promises to be explosive with the two prospects sharing a combined record of 43-2 with 30 KOs.

“As a kid growing up it was always my dream to fight and win a Lonsdale belt,” said 24-year-old Hall.

“It’s the best belt in boxing and I want to bring it home and put it on my mantlepiece.

“To get an opportunity like this in front of a sell-out crowd at the O2 Arena is absolutely fantastic, and I can’t wait.”

Small has a reputation for running his mouth, but Hall says he won’t let the jibes get under his skin.

“Talk doesn’t win you the fight, it’s just cheap,” said Hall. “I’d rather be a man of action rather than words.

“People don’t want to hear all the bravado beforehand. I’d rather keep my mouth shut and keep my mind on the job in hand.

“I’ll give him nine or 10 rounds. He can run early, he might pick a few rounds here and there, but I’ll break him by the ninth or 10th.”

Andriy Kotelnik Ready For Amir Khan!

Andriy Kotelnik is confident he can defy the odds and successfully defend his WBA light-welterweight title against Amir Khan when the pair go head to head on Saturday 27 June. Kotelnik heads into the fight the bookmakers’ underdog. But the hard hitting Ukrainian told the Steve Bunce Boxing Hour on Setanta Sports News he wasn’t impressed with Khan. He said: “I’ve watched DVDs of him in action and I’m not impressed.

“He might be the bookies favourite leading up to the fight but I am world champion.”

Kotelnik slammed Khan for “always gabbling on” and dismissed any talk of the Bolton-born star ruling the light-welterweight division.

He added: “First off, I am the world champion; secondly I think I am the best of all the world champions. I will fight the best fighters in the division. But Khan isn’t one of them. I am confident I can beat him.”

Is Chris Edwards The Best Little Man In Britain?

British and Commonwealth flyweight champion Chris Edwards is back in the ring tonight as the pint-sized whirlwind takes on crafty challenger Usman Ahmed in a rematch headlining Frank Maloney’s show at Fenton Manor Sports Complex in Stoke-on-Trent, England.

At 33, Edwards, 12-13-3 (4), stands atop the UK flyweight division but presides over a cauldron of a weight class simply teeming with rivals looking for an opportunity to knock off the Stoke icon.

One of those upstarts, Usman Ahmed, gets the chance to just that tonight as the 27 year old from Derby challenges for Edward’s coveted British and Commonwealth crowns.

The pair of combatants already met once in September, 2006 in a clash that saw Ahmed make his professional debut and absorb his only loss to date.

Ahmed has since gone 5-0-1, gaining valuable experience in the process but has his work cut out for him if he is to realize his lofty goal of dethroning the king of the flyweights.

The first Ahmed fight was also a turning point for Edwards as the diminutive dervish subsequently stopped Dale Robinson in a shocker to win the English flyweight crown and forever shed the journeyman tag picked up by going 1-7 during his first eight pro contests.

A rematch with Robinson in 2007 resulted in a draw for the vacant British and Commonwealth flyweight belts but the bout was so brutal, Robinson retired at age 27 rather than face Edwards a third time.

When the chance to contend for the British super flyweight title surfaced in December of that year, Edwards grabbed the opportunity with both hands and mounted a withering toe to toe slugfest that saw him outpoint previously unbeaten Jamie McDonnell by a split decision.

But the Edwards victory parade hit a roadblock last march when the Potteries hero was unable to overcome towering English champ Andy Bell during a first title defense, losing all three scorecards on points.

At just 5’3, Edwards was at a big size disadvantage at super fly but a drop back down to flyweight against Wayne Bloy this past January provided a shot in the arm as Edwards took home the vacant British and Commonwealth belts that he will put at risk this evening against Ahmed in Stoke.

A win tonight could put Chris Edwards in the mix for a European title challenge but a loss would likely rule out any such honors in the future or even another crack at the British belt.

Frank Maloney Presents a British and Commonwealth Flyweight title bout between reigning champion Chris Edwards and challenger Usman Ahmed with full undercard at Fenton Manor Sports Complex in Stoke-on-Trent, England on Friday, May 29, 2009

Tickets are on sale at £35 and £75 and available from and 0871 226 1508.

Sky Sports will broadcast live on SS1 starting at 10PM.