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Biggest North East show of the year headlined by English title fight

Phil Jeffries’ promotion Pro Box North East will host its seventh show of the year on Sunday and it is set to be the biggest in the region this year.

The show, at the Hartlepool Borough Hall, will feature seven top fights with the main two both for titles. It is the headline fight that has caught most people’s attention.

The bill topper pits East Rainton’s Martin Ward against former world title challenger Jason Booth for the vacant English bantamweight title.

Ward has been on the verge of winning a title for about 12 month now but a series of real bad luck has always resulted in the North East hot prospect always missing out. Most recently Ward was forced to pull out of the Summer Rumble 2 bill where he was due to fight Mike Robinson for that English title, due to a hand injury.

Jeffries promised back then that the bout would be re-arranged for this show but Ward’s chances looked to take another big blow When Robinson this time pulled out of the fight.

Jason Booth, who did fight on the Summer Rumble 2 bill – losing on points to Ireland’s Willie Casey, has instead stepped in and Martin Ward will finally have his chance to shine and show his promise.

Jeffries Said: “It’s down to Dave Garside that this fight is going ahead. It costs a lot of money to get some of these boxers on the bill but it is Garside’s management and sponsorship of Martin Ward that has made this possible. I’ve also got a good match maker in Mike Marsden so everybody all works together to make these shows possible.”

Many have praised Phil and co. for pulling of this bout and many have said that this is actually better than the original fight and this is a view Phil shares.

“It’s a harder fight for Martin and also a better fight. I think it’s ten times better than the original fight. Jason Booth is a big name, he’s fought for a world title and he’s also won European and British titles and I think his fight at the Stadium of Light proved that Jason is not finished yet.

“I think this will be the fight of the year in the North East and Martin Ward knows if he wins this fight I will get him a British title fight. I think Martin will win but Jason will be up for it, he is a proper warrior so it will be a cracking fight.”

A british title fight could be a real possibility for Ward should he win here. The current British bantamweight champion, Jamie McDonnell, is due to fight on the Kell Brook undercard on October 20th in an IBF world title eliminator. Should McDonnell emerge victorious then it is highly likely he will vacate the title making a potential Martin Ward as English champion, a sure contender.


In the support headline fight Gary Fox and Neil Hepper go head-to-head for a second time this year after the two produced one of the most entertaining fights your likely to ever see at Hartlepool back in March. Fox was victorious that time but this time there is added incentive for both as the vacant Northern Area light welterweight title is on the line.

“The first fight these two had was one of the best fights I’ve ever put on.” Phil said of the clash, “If this one is anything like that one then it will be an absolute cracker.”

The other North East fighters that make up the bill are Hartlepool’s Peter Cope, Greg O’Neill, Mohammed Waqas, Robert Ismay and Callum Winton.

Winton, also from Hartlepool, competes for just the second time on Sunday after a disappointing result at Summer Rumble 2 on his debut. Winton drew with Steve Martin but promoter Phil Jeffries believes it was a controversial decision.

“The referee was terrible in Callum’s debut fight. Everybody who watched that fight thought that Callum won but this referee, it wasn’t the first time we had trouble with him. For me Winton won that fight but he didn’t get the decision. Fair play to the lad though he wanted to get straight back in.”

Phil also had some interesting words for his boxers saying that he will no longer allow them easy fights against journeymen. He revealed he now expects all his boxers to step up and fight 50/50 fights or he ‘just wont bother with them’.

Phil also revealed that he doesn’t expect Michael Hunter, who was due to be on this bill, to box again. The former world title challenger from Hartlepool is now expected to go into coaching although nothing is as of yet confirmed.

Tickets are priced at £30 and are available on the door at the Hartlepool Borough Hall. Boxing is due to commence at 1pm. Also, if anybody is interested sponsorship of the event is still available, you can contact Phil Jeffries for more information about that.


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