After Thomas Ward and Josh Leather recorded upset wins (at least according to the bookies) we crowed about how North East boxing is on the up. Something we have biasedly championed for a while now. In celebration of the recent success, and ahead of the Matchroom bandwagon rolling into town next month, we have compiled a list of potential all North East matchups we would quite like to see. Basically as an excuse to showcase just how much talent we have up here!
Jeff Saunders vs Josh Leather
While Saunders will probably see himself just on the periphery of domestic titles, Leather sees himself right in the mix. The backing of Frank Warren and his recent IBF Inter-Continental win drew national attention and supported the Guisborough twin’s claim to shot at the Lonsdale belt. Both men have similar records (12-0 and 11-0 respectively) against relatively modest opposition and would both fancy their chances should this contest get scheduled.
Likelihood: Neither man’s promoter would likely risk it at this stage. There would be relatively little reward other than local bragging rights. Maybe in the future.
Jone TK vs Carl Wilson
A local heavyweight contest that was already scheduled once before injury scuppered its chances. Both men have losses on their record so the fear of losing that magical “0” won’t stand in the way here. When both are fit this one will surely happen sooner rather than later and is almost guaranteed to bring action and excitement. Get it on!
Likelihood: Certain to happen in the near future, provided both men are fit and ready to enter the ring. Fighting Chance Promotions are said to have 2 bouts in the pipeline for their man TK, and I’d be surprised if Wilson wasn’t on that list.
Billy Snaith vs Josh Kelly – Tom Whitfield winner
Ferryhill’s Northern Area champion, Snaith, is coming his comprehensive title win over fierce rival Dan Cope. Cope is undoubtedly talented but Snaith did the business over 10 rounds last month. Another local bout that didn’t make it to the ring, Snaith-Whitfield was slated to take place until Tom suffered an injury. If he upsets Matchroom’s “Pretty Boy” Kelly, it makes a great deal of sense to get the fight remade. If Kelly continues his superb start to the paid ranks, then Eddie Hearn could do a lot worse than keep the Sunderland boxer in the region for a shot at his first professional title.
Likelihood: On the surface, there doesn’t seem to be any reason why this couldn’t happen. I don’t imagine the Northern Area title is too high a priority for Kelly and Matchroom however so it would be more likely should Whitfield get the win on June 23rd.
Thomas Essomba vs Anthony Nelson
One that has been batted back and forth longer than we’ve covered the sport. As is the case with boxing, it was a much anticipated clash when both boxers were undefeated. They’ve since lost on the road, Essomba twice, and Nelson hasn’t been in the ring since losing a Fight of the Year clash against Jamie Conlan over a year ago.
Likelihood: As Nelson’s future is unclear and Essomba has lost a little momentum, this one won’t be happening.
Paul Gidney vs Jamie Humble
With these 2 local fighters only having 5 fights between them, it’s admittedly one we will file optimistically as “one for the future” but it’s an interesting prospect nonetheless. Humble only turned professional last year and has fought twice since to stay active. Gidney on the other hand has had a battle out of the ring but is looking to make up for lost time when he comes back to the sport on the June 23rd Matchroom NEXTGEN card in Walker.
Likelihood: If both men continue their stylish starts to their respective careers, their paths could certainly cross. Not likely to take place in the near future however.
Lee Mould vs Glenn Foot
This one could easily be Lee Mould vs Anyone. The hard hitting “Mexican Mackem” is a throwback fighter who should really be in the mix for titles beyond local level. Foot is in exactly that position as he challenges for the English Super Lightweight title. If Mould could comeback and perform to his potential, this could be a Fight of the Year contender without doubt.
Likelihood: Not likely to happen unfortunately. Could be an absolute cracker!
Warren Baister vs Simon Vallily
Another pair of local boxers in the same weight class. The two Cruiserweight both possess immense amateur credentials and would both fancy their chances. Baister is unbeaten and Vallily has only one loss on his ledger (a brave defeat to Latvian world title contender Mairis Breidis) so the contest would prove tantalising for local fans and those further afield.
Likelihood: The duo both box on Phil Jeffries shows so any potential promotional politics wouldn’t be an issue. No reason it can’t happen somewhere down the line.