The Untouchables Copper Box Arena Update!
(January 17th) A calf injury has forced Zolani Tete to postpone from his WBO World Bantamweight title defense against Omar Narvaez.
Tete, 29, was due to defend his crown at London’s Copper Box Arena on Saturday 10th February, but will now make his mandatory defence against the Argentinian at a later date in 2018.
“I’m hugely disappointed to have to postpone my fight with Omar Narvaez.” Said Tete. “Unfortunately I picked up a calf injury that has severely hindered my training and the only option was to postpone the fight.
“I train as hard as I fight so there is always a risk of picking up injuries. World Championship defences are incredibly tough and it is unsafe fighting when you are not fit. Narvaez is a two-weight World Champion so it is vital that I am fully prepared for him.
“I am determined to put on another explosive performance for my UK fans when I face Narvaez. After I beat him the plan is to unify the Bantamweight division against Ryan Burnett. It is a fight that the boxing World wants to see and I am hopeful that it will happen in 2018.”
Frank Warren’s bumper ‘Untouchables’ show still features some of the best British talent around, with Bradley Skeete, Anthony Yarde, Daniel Dubois and Zelfa Barrett all looking to make statements to kick-off a huge 2018.
British Welterweight Champion Bradley ‘Super’ Skeete (27-1, 12 KO’s) faces IBF Inter-Continental Welterweight Champion Laszlo Toth (25-3-1, 17 KO’s) for the Vacant WBC International belt. Skeete is ready to prove his World class credentials and knows that a win on February 10 will take him a step closer to a dream World Title shot.
“This is an opportunity to add another belt to my collection,” said Skeete. “Toth has won the IBF European and Inter-Continental titles and should provide a good test for me. I have strong ratings with the WBO and IBF, winning this title will push me up the WBC rankings as well.
“2018 is the year that I will prove I’m a World class fighter. I know that my style would give anyone trouble, it’s why I’ve been avoided. I’m ready and waiting to prove what I can do against the best!”
Ilford Light-Heavyweight Anthony Yarde (14-0, 13 KO’s) defends his WBO Inter-Continental and European Light-Heavyweight titles against Frenchman Tony Averlant (26-9-2, 5 KO’s). ‘The Beast’ is determined to pick up from where he left off in 2017 after becoming the first man to stop Nikola Sjekloca with a heavy-handed display which last less than four rounds.
“I enjoyed a successful 2017, winning three belts and stopping all five of my opponents,” said Yarde. “2018 is going to be an even bigger year but whatever is meant to happen will happen, I’m not in any rush. My job is to keep my head down, work hard and enjoy the journey.
“I’m hoping that Averlant is a durable opponent, he’s only been stopped twice and one of those stoppages was against former WBA Light-Heavyweight World Champion Juergen Braeher. I’m looking to gain some crucial extra minutes in the ring.”
Heavyweight sensation Daniel ‘Dynamite’ Dubois (6-0, 6 KO’s) defends his Southern-Area belt against Kent’s DL Jones (8-0-1). The Peacock Gym powerhouse claimed the title after knocking AJ Carter out cold in the opening round with a massive right hand at the Copper Box Arena back in September and is promising to start 2018 with another explosive KO.
“I’m ready to start 2018 with a bang,” said Dubois. “I’m working hard to be the best that I can possibly be and I’m feeling good. Everything is going great, I’m just staying in the gym, staying focused, and staying dedicated to it.
“I’m looking forward to being back at the Copper Box Arena, it’s starting to feel like a home venue for me and I always get a great reception from the fans. I’ll be looking to send them home happy on February 10.”
English Super-Featherweight Champion Zelfa ‘Brown Flash’ Barrett (19-0, 12 KO’s) fights for the first time in the capital when he takes on Spain’s Ivan Ruiz Morote (18-8-1, 7 KO’s) over ten rounds. Manchester’s Barrett is closing in on a salivating showdown with rival Super-Featherweight star Lyon Woodstock.
“I rate him as a person,” said Barrett. “He’s a nice guy. He’s a good fighter. Anybody in my weight division, they all can get it. So I’ll just say he’s a good fighter and I respect him as a person.
“I only do my talking in the ring. There’ll be no fight talk, there’s nothing personal. He’s a cool guy, he wants to do his family proud so you can’t take that away from him. All I’m focused on for now is getting the win in style on February, it’ll be my first so I’ll be putting on a show.”
Hard-hitting Southampton Super-Welterweight Joe Pigford returns to the ring after a brutal KO win over Aaron Morgan in May 2017; all-action Welling Super-Featherweight talent Archie ‘Sharpshooter’ Sharp aims to improve his unbeaten record to 12-0; gifted Southampton Featherweight Ryan ‘The Piranha’ Garner looks to get his career back on track when he fights over four rounds; Ilford Welterweight Hamzah Sheeraz returns to the scene of his impressive TKO debut win over Duane Green; stylish Ilford Super-Middleweight Umar Sadiq and former Team GB Flyweight Harvey Horn both look to go 2-0 while Beckton Lightweight and Anthony Yarde gym mate Mohammed Bilal Ali makes his professional debut.
Boy Jones Jr. Moves Up to Lightweight!
(January 8th) Boy Jones Jr. says he is feeling fitter and stronger than ever after making the jump from Super-Featherweight to Lightweight.
The former Southern Area 130lbs Champion returns to the ring on Frank Warren’s bumper ‘Untouchables’ card at the Copper Box Arena on Saturday 10th February and is aiming to impress at his new weight.
“My body is finally starting to fill out and I felt it was the right time to move up to 135lbs,” said Jones Jr. “I sat down with my trainer Dominic Negus and it was an easy decision to make. I had a lot of success at Super-Feather but my power just seemed to drain from my body as soon as I made weight.
“I’ve had a good break since I last fought in September. I’m filling into the weight and getting stronger with each session in the gym. I look better and I feel healthier – my mum has wanted me to move up in weight for a while!
“I’ve been sparring with Rio 2016 Olympian Joe Cordina and I’m definitely starting to find my ‘man’ power. I feel stronger and meaner at the weight and I don’t fade at all as the rounds go on which was a problem in the Poxton fight.”
The angel-faced assassin picked up his first professional title at the tender age of 19 when he dominated Martin Hillman to win the Southern Area belt in front of a capacity crowd at the Brentwood Centre, live on BoxNation, in November 2016.
He suffered his first career loss to Lowestoft warrior Craig Poxton in his next fight at York Hall in a Fight of the Year contender but bounced back with wins over Norbert Kalucza, Andis Didzus and Ibrar Riyaz, and will aim to kick-start 2018 with a big performance in East London.
“One of the most talent deep divisions at domestic level is the Lightweight class and I’ll be looking to throw my name into the mix. There’s some great fights out there for me this year but first of all I can’t wait to perform at the Copper Box Arena on February 10th.
“I always say it but people need to realise that I only had a handful of unlicensed fights before I turned pro back in 2015. I’ve had a lot of fights for a 21-year-old and I’m constantly learning and improving. This is the year that everyone will get to see the real Boy Jones Jnr.”
Four of the most avoided fighters in the United Kingdom return to action at the Copper Box Arena on February 10th, live on BT Sport and BoxNation.
Ilford Light-Heavyweight ‘Beast’ Anthony Yarde will be aiming to pick up from where he left off in 2017 after becoming the first man to stop Nikola Sjekloca with a heavy-handed display last weekend which lasted less than four rounds; Heavyweight sensation Daniel ‘Dynamite Dubois is determined to start 2018 with another explosive KO after his two-round destruction of Dorian Darch; British Welterweight Champion Bradley ‘Super’ Skeete is ready to prove his World class credentials as he looks to entice one of the 147lbs Champions into a showdown in 2018 and WBO Bantamweight Champion Zolani Tete makes the second defence of his crown against former two-weight World Champion Omar Andres Narvaez.
Some of the best up-and-coming talent in the South feature on a talent-packed undercard.
All-action Welling Super-Featherweight talent Archie ‘Sharpshooter’ Sharp aims to improve his unbeaten record to 12-0; gifted Southampton Featherweight Ryan ‘The Piranha’ Garner looks to get his career back on track when he fights over four rounds; Ilford Welterweight Hamza Sheeraz returns to the scene of his impressive TKO debut win over Duane Green; stylish Ilford Super-Middleweight Umar Sadiq and Chigwell Flyweight Harvey Horn both look to go 2-0 while Beckton Lightweight and Anthony Yarde gym mate Mohammed Bilal Ali makes his professional debut.
(December 18th) Four of the most avoided fighters in the United Kingdom return to action on Frank Warren’s first card of 2018 at London’s Copper Box Arena on Saturday 10th February, live on BT Sport and BoxNation.
The bumper ‘UNTOUCHABLES’ card at the Olympic Park venue will feature Anthony Yarde, Daniel Dubois, Bradley Skeete and WBO World Bantamweight Champion Zolani Tete, as they each seek to entice their elusive rivals into the ring to set up a big 2018.
Ilford Light-Heavyweight Anthony Yarde (14-0, 13 KO’s) is quickly establishing himself as one of the rising stars of boxing and will be aiming to pick up from where he left off in 2017 after becoming the first man to stop Nikola Sjekloca with a heavy-handed display last weekend which lasted less than four rounds.
A fruitful 2017 that saw Yarde win the Southern Area, WBO Intercontinental and WBO European Light-Heavyweight belts has cemented his position as the number one Light-Heavyweight in Britain and he is determined to prove it by enticing Londoner Frank Buglioni into the ring, which has so far proven difficult for the big punching ‘Beast From the East’.
“Everyone knows that an offer has been made for Buglioni to fight me,” said Yarde. “If he really wants to fight me like he says he does then let’s make it happen on February 10th. This is the fight everybody wants to see, I’m the number one Light-Heavyweight in the UK and he’s number two.
“If he doesn’t want to know then I’ll carry on doing what I’ve been doing for the past year and progressing up that World ladder. My World ranking is improving with every fight and if he isn’t careful then Buglioni will become irrelevant.”
Heavyweight sensation Daniel ‘Dynamite’ Dubois (6-0, 6 KO’s) returns to action after his two-round destruction of former Anthony Joshua opponent Dorian Darch. Dubois floored the Welshman four times on the way to his sixth successive stoppage win and is determined to kick-off the New Year with another explosive KO win.
Already a Southern Area and WBC World Youth Champion, the young giant could be adding more belts before his 21st birthday in September.
“Daniel is by far the most exciting young Heavyweight prospect that I have seen during my 37 years as a boxing promoter,” said Frank Warren. “He is also the hardest prospect to match because nobody wants to get in the ring with him!
“Guys are asking for ridiculous money to face him, which means he must be doing something right. 2018 is going to be an evening bigger year for Daniel and he will be stepping up in class again on February 10th.”
British Welterweight Champion Bradley ‘Super’ Skeete (27-1, 12 KO’s) wants to throw his name into World Title contention after securing the Lord Lonsdale belt outright against Dale Evans last time out at the Copper Box Arena.
The Penge punch picker was left bitterly frustrated when WBO World Champion Jeff Horn, a fight that at one stage looked possible, declined to defend his Title against him and instead opted for Gary Corcoran. Skeete is undeterred and will be hoping to secure a dream World Title shot later in 2018.
“Horn took the easier fight in Corcoran and blatantly avoided me,” said Skeete. “I’d have taken Horn to school and his team and his advisors knew that. That’s all in the past now and I’ll be aiming to start the year in style with a win on February 10th. Mark my words, I will win a World Title in 2018.”
Also in action, is WBO Bantamweight Champion of the World Zolani Tete, who makes the second defence of his crown against Omar Andres Narvaez.
Tete (26-3, 21 KO’s) stopped Siboniso Gonya in just eleven seconds last month, sleeping him with the very first punch of the fight and setting a new World record for the fastest KO ever recorded in a World Title fight. The 29-year-old landed a brutal right hook just six seconds into the bout to retain his WBO Bantamweight title at Belfast’s SSE Arena.
‘Last Born’ is determined to prove he is the best 118lbs fighter on the planet by unifying the division in what would be a huge showdown with Belfast’s IBF and WBA Super Bantamweight Champion Ryan Burnett, but must first come through his latest test against Narvaez.
The Argentinian, Narvaez (47-2-2, 25 KO) is 4-0 since a knockout loss to Japanese superstar Naoya Inoue and recently forced unbeaten Nikolai Potapov to quit in seven. He has held the WBO Flyweight and Super-Flyweight World Titles and will be aiming to become a three-weight World Champion by defeating Tete.
Tete however has become frustrated that the three belt unification with Burnett has so far proved elusive and will be looking to take those frustrations out on his mandatory challenger Narvaez on February 10th.
“Where is Ryan Burnett at?” asked Tete. “I want to unify the Bantamweight division and he is standing in my way. As a World Champion it is your duty to fight the best in the World. I am willing to travel anywhere on the planet to unify the Bantamweight division. If Burnett wants me to travel to Belfast I will happily do it. If he wants to be considered a top fighter and seriously be considered a unified champion he should want to test himself against the best.
“His promoter is talking about financial legacy – I’ve heard some bad excuses for not making fights in the past but this is the worst, it’s nothing but a blatant duck. They are robbing the public of a brilliant fight.”
“My promoter Frank Warren has offered to pay my purse for me to fight Burnett on a card promoted by his team. This means it will be by far Burnett’s biggest pay day. It is the biggest fight in the division, for the most money, to not fight me when there are no obstacles in the way would be shameful and cowardly.
“I hope Burnett hears this, as I would never allow the people around me make me look like a coward, and that is what his promoter’s comments make him look like.”
Further exciting additions to the February 10 undercard will be announced in due course.