Robinson vs Jenman, Genting Arena, Birmingham. 24 March 2018
Andrew Robinson returns to Walsall Town Hall for just the third time in his 26 fight pro career this weekend as Errol Johnson’s BCB Promotions presents their opening edition of 2019 ‘No Love Lost.’
We often hear that the common advice given to any boxer is to not look beyond their next opponent. But how can the former International Boxing Organisation Continental Middleweight Champion not be considering the exciting prospects of taking on Poland’s seemingly invincible Damian Jonak in a contest already scheduled to take place in Poland on 6 April this year?
Jonak has a 50% knockout ratio and is unbeaten in 42 contests. It’s a big fight for Robinson. Too big to ignore.
Nonetheless it is the next opponent that matters right now for ‘D’Animal’ and we can expect that he’ll be aiming to get straight back to winning ways this Saturday, especially following the disappointment of the defeat in his last fight to Mark Heffron when they fought for the World Boxing Council International Middleweight Title on 9th June last year.
Robinson’s record now stands at 21-4-1 and it’s clear that he’s looking to build on it with a few more good wins whilst Father Time is on his side. At 34 years now the Redditch boxer is still in the mix, chasing big fights and elite level titles and he’s already shown that he’s very, very good at what he does.
Something tells us that Robinson will definitely be aiming to send a message out about that to anyone who’s looking or listening, come Saturday night.
Also on the fight card Danny Ball, from Kingswinford returns in search of his eighth win in as many professional contests whilst Burton’s Leon Gower makes a welcome return following his defeat to Brad Foster in what was truly a Stadium Suite sizzler. We also see Levi Ferguson back for his fourth fight and Liam Davies, 22 and from Telford in Shropshire making his second appearance.
Tickets, priced at £35 standard or £65 VIP ringside with a buffet and waitress service, are on sale from the Town Hall Box Office on 0845 111 2900. It will be £40 for entry on the door.
Two years after first entering a gym Brett Fidoe had reached just 13 years of age when he had his first bout as an amateur boxer. For the next 3 years, inspired by the world of boxing that seemed to live and breath around him, especially through his two boxing cousins Ernie and Billy Smith, Fidoe boxed in 18 amateur bouts.
He made his professional debut aged 21 after a 5 year break from the sport and after a tough start grabbed his first professional win in his third pro fight.
Sixty four fights later, and following a career that has seen him take on the likes of former English Bantamweight Champion Thomas Essomba, Don Broadhurst who was the BBBofC Midlands Area Super Flyweight Title holder and current Midlands Flyweight contender Matt Windle (whom he beat on points), Fidoe is about to challenge for a Midlands Area Title.
Now residing in Evesham the Midlands born boxer has found his boxing home at Eastside Boxing in Birmingham where, under Jon Pegg, his boxing is really beginning to show true promise. Four wins and one draw in his last five fights have cemented Fidoe’s claim for title contention and he now looks forward to challenging for the BBBofC Midlands Area Title on 29th March 2019.
The talented featherweight, also known as Brett ‘The Threat’ Fidoe but who also described himself in a recent facebook post as Brett ‘The Upset’ Fidoe, took a moment out to talk to MBC ahead of what many believe is the biggest fight of his career.
MBC – Do you remember how you felt before your first pro fight in Hartlepool back in 2012? What was that like?
“Mate. I remember it like yesterday. I was buzzing, wasn’t one bit nervous..just wanted to get in there and f**k him up, but obviously that didn’t happen, but I had all the Board saying how good a debut that was. I think I may of got over anxious as I’d been out the ring for about 6 years.”
MBC – You stopped Mushtaq in Bham in your third fight and had that points win in Swindon in your sixth fight. You knew what it felt like to win during your early career. And then that win in Kings Cross the following year. That must have been amazing. And also you were the first boxer to beat Brad Watson after he’d just won 10 straight.
“Yes I did, but to be honest I just wanted to earn some money win, lose or draw… And the Watson fight I was buzzing for that. The more the boxer the better I perform. But I got to a point in my career where I wasn’t motivated for 4 or 6 rounders anymore and wouldn’t train as much. But then I got thinking about my fights and something just clicked and I said to myself, most of these kids who beat me I shouldn’t be losing to them. So started training more and thought ‘let’s have ago.’ And it’s showing so far. Come March 29th I’ll be Midlands Champ.”
MBC – Something must have clicked with you and the team? Training? Experience? What is it?
“Just started training more. And sparring more. And Jon got me doing more runs with him. Licky Hill, it’s a killer. The team has always told me that I’m capable of fighting for the British. So really it was just down to me to get myself in the gym more”
Licky Hills? What the hell is that (laughter) and when you do win the title is there anyone in particular that will come to mind? Anyone that you will think of as either inspirational or encouraging for the journey that you’ve been on or that after 66 fights, when you’re about to fight your 3rd title fight you think about?
“Licky Hills, its a running session..Mate, I’ve boxed with loads of inspirational fighters such as Kristian Laight. What an achievement. Lewis van Poetsch also made the 100 mark last weekend.
“But there’s one that I’ve never forgot.
“I was boxing Haroon Khan on the Amir Khan vs Julio Diaz bill in Sheffield. It was my first television fight. I was really nervous and we was sharing the dressing room with Nate Campbell and his team. He saw I was nervous and said “You nervous boy?”
“Yes.” I replied. “
“How many fight you had?”
“Can’t remember.” I didn’t have many at the time. “
“He said “Listen, take some deep breaths to calm yourself down and just enjoy the moment when you get out there. Just enjoy yourself in the ring.”
“And his Trainers called me Sparky (laughs). After the fight the one trainer watched it and said “Daaaaam!! You little sparky (laughs). But I’ve met a few good people on my journey so far.”
MBC – That’s an amazing story. And we’ve watched Kristian Laight a few times too.
“He’s a good lad.”
MBC – so, you might not want to give too much away, but I still would like to ask if there’s anything in particular you’re gonna be focusing on in your training ahead of the fight?
“Now that would be telling (laughs). Just that who ever watches the fight – it’s gonna be fireworks for sure.”
MBC – We can’t wait. and we wish you the best. You’ve been brilliant. Thanks for sharing
The current Midlands Area Welterweight Champion Kaisee Benjamin was taken all the way when he faced tough as nails Kevin McCauley in a 6 round contest at Holte Suite, Villa Park last Saturday night.
Referee Kevin Parker scored the bout 60 – 54 in Benjamin’s favour after an encounter that, for much of the time, saw Benjamin on top courtesy of the kind of display that will have done his growing reputation no harm whatsoever.
Both fighters came out with a look of intent when the first bell rang but it was Benjamin that took control of the centre of the ring. He went to work with some meaty looking hooks to the body and stalked McCauley relentlessly, walking the older fighter down and skipping back out of range each time anything dangerous looking came swinging back at him.
McCauley tried to make a quick impression at the start of round two, throwing out a couple of fast left jabs but he walked onto a powerful left-right combo that sent him stumbling back onto the ropes. Benjamin followed up with more pressure, searching hooks that McCauley soon decided weren’t worth sticking around for and he quickly returned to boxing on the retreat.
Each attempt that McCauley made to take control of the ring, Benjamin resisted and even the flurry of solid looking punches that McCauley threw towards the end of round two and which had Benjamin wheeling and ducking back out of range in escape – not without a few of the punches landing – didn’t seem to phase him. Immediately after Kevin Parker hollered break as the fighters clinched for the last time in the round Benjamin was back on the front foot and the previous pattern of the fight was resumed.
Round three was much the same except that Benjamin had began to vary the target for his stinging hooks, switching from body to head and back, whenever he could. It worked for him and he caught McCauley with a clean left that snapped back the Brighton born fighter’s head with enough force to draw a whoop of appreciation from the audience. Benjamin couldn’t take advantage though and McCauley saw out the round.
McCauley somehow survived another potent looking attack at the start of round four. Benjamin seemed to want to get his jab into the fight and threw some snappy shots that paved the way for the left and right crosses that followed. This round was much more one sided than the previous and saw McCauley begin to grab and hold a bit more whilst also complaining to the ref about getting rabbit punched.
McCauley spent much of the next round covering up and relying on the occasional counter whilst Benjamin, now warming to the task, was looking impressive and throwing punches in bunches. The referee didn’t have to get too involved and Benjamin took the round convincingly.
Benjamin went into the final round well ahead and could have coasted it but he continued to pursue his opponent who, despite looking a little jaded actually turned out some of his best work during that remaining three minutes. Both fighters got caught with stinging shots to the head and whilst McCauley shook off his with a little dance and shimmy, Benjamin’s response was to glance a smile before going back to work. Kevin Parker had to warn Benjamin to keep his punches up as the round ground to a close but the result had already been written.
With this points win, the fifth of his eight fights to date, with the other two wins coming by KO (vs Paul Cummings) and TKO (vs Alex Fearon), the talented 23 year old Birmingham boxer moved to 7-1-0 (2 KOs) and will surely now be looking to plot a route to more and bigger title fights.
As a Coach or Trainer one of the most satisfying moments that you can experience is when you see a member of your team getting gains from applying the skills that you’ve taught them.
It’s not enough to just be tough when you’re a boxer. Toughness will take you so far, as will determination and effort. To reach those higher levels you will need to be able to apply your boxing skills and rely on what you’ve been taught during those hours and hours of training.
And, according to Great Wyrley Boxing Club’s facebook page, the response to Shaun Cooper’s praiseworthy performance last night (which saw him notch up his seventh straight professional win in as many contests) suggests that as far as his team is concerned the Walsall born boxer is doing just that.
“Solid performance, shot selection and work rate was outstanding.” Head Coach Pete Hickenbottom commented on the facebook post before adding “Another box well ticked.” And Hickenbottom was spot on.
Despite Chris Adaway’s high energy and slippery movement, two key elements of his game and smart boxing assets that certainly kept him in the contest for its duration, he was really up against it throughout the six round bout and Cooper was in mood for giving any form of charity.
He may have been battling a slightly taller, slightly older and much more experienced pro boxer but Cooper, otherwise dubbed Scorpion, was definitely the dominant force and well worthy of the 60-55 scorecard that referee Kevin Parker consequently scribed in his favour.
It’s easy to see why Shaun Cooper is both popular and rated, and there’s clearly more to come from him. So, to quote his wise-headed Head Coach once again, ‘on to the next one fella!’
Ijaz Ahmed and Matt Windle go toe-to-toe for the Midlands Area Flyweight Title in March.
Birmingham’s ‘Jazzy’ was crowned Area King back in December thanks to an absorbing ten round battle with Derby Conar Blackshaw.
He makes a first defence against Poet-With-A-Punch Matt Windle at the H Suite, Edgbaston, on Friday, 15th March 2019.
The title clash tops BCB Promotions’ first Second City show of the new year.
“Matt’s a good fighter and it will be a tough fight but I’m not ready to give up this belt,”Ahmed told bcb-promotions.com.
“I like to give the fans what they want; entertainment. This fight will be no different.”
Joining Ahmed on the card are a host of Birmingham boxers. Midlands Area Prospect of the Year, Shaka Thompson, is in action alongside Brad ‘Bosh’ Thomas and Jordan Clayton. Midlands Area Lightweight Champion, Kane Baker, features as do Zaheer Ashgar, Mussab Abubaker and Daryl Pearce.
Tickets, priced at £30 standard (£40 on the door) or £65 ringside to include a light finger buffet are on sale now.
Contact the boxers on Facebook or call 07463 695 058.
Looking back at the Gethin vs Hibbert title fight that took place in November 2016, you can’t help but notice how incredibly relaxed Martin Gethin appears to be throughout the entire bout. His movement is calculated and fluid, and despite being the smaller man and having to soak up a good measure of his opponent’s weighty punches, he never slips into any type of panic mode and wastes very little energy on his way to finishing the fight in the 4th round with a devastating four punch combination. From the off, it’s as if he knows deep down that he’ll be leaving Wembley Arena later that evening as the new IBF International Super Lightweight Champion – no matter what.
Just months before the fight Gethin had admitted that he was considering retirement and had he done so, especially following the disappointing defeat against Adam Little in the September of the same year, there would have been no complaint from his many fans. ‘The Quiet Man’ had already, courtesy of a glittering 35 fight pro career that began in 2004 and that had seen him win seven titles, written his name into Walsall boxing’s Hall of Fame. Instead Gethin fought three more times upsetting the odds to capture the IBF Title in the second of his ‘comeback’ fights. In doing so he’d managed to put the seal on a remarkable boxing legacy.
Gethin officially announced his retirement in April 2017 prompting one fan to write that the popular Walsall born fighter was a ‘Great servant to Midlands boxing.’ and adding ‘The night he won the British at Walsall Town Hall is still up there as one of my favourite nights at boxing.’
Now a Trainer at the Wild Star Boxing Gym in Aldridge, ‘The Quiet Man’ has turned his attention towards developing new boxers and growing his boxing equipment and clothing brand ‘MG1983.’
He took a time out from his schedule to answer a few Qs for us.
So how’s it going at Wild Star Boxing Gym?
It’s going really good thank you. The amateurs are improving with each training session and with each fight.
We hear you’re working with a lot of good young boxers. Any prospects we should keep an eye out for?
From my gym at the moment I’d say Kane Woods, William Adams and Harvey Hawkins but I have a few more good amateurs coming through too.
What would you say are the biggest challenges young boxers face?
Social media as I think it’s too much exposure for them at a young age. It’s scary enough getting in the ring never mind with the whole of the media knowing too.
MG1983 Equipment and Clothing Line
The first time that you fought at Walsall Town Hall was 2005 when you beat Michael Medor on points. What was that like?
It was great to box in Walsall in front of my home crowd. I think I took the fight lightly as it turned out to be a really tough fight – which I was very glad I won in front of my fans. I was 4-0 he was 2-0. Also I was told he had been in the Olympics so I was even more nervous.
What was the highlight of your career?
I have 2 main highlights of my career. 1. Boxing in Las Vegas which I won by KO. 2. Winning the British title by KO at Walsall Town Hall in front of my home crowd.
You’ve probably been asked this a thousand times, but what was it like fighting in Vegas?
It was like a dream being told I’d be boxing in Las Vegas. It’s a place every Boxer wants to box at. It’s where all the World Champions box and I was able to box there. It was amazing being able to meet a lot of my boxing heroes like Ricky Hatton, Oscar De La Hoya, Shane Mosley. Even more spectacular was that I won by KO against a tough Mexican.
Unbeaten for your first 16 pro fights. That’s some record. What were the secrets of your success during that period?
The secret of that was the main word that is in Boxing and that is staying disciplined. Staying in the gym and working and working on things I keep doing wrong and keeping fit. And having a good wife that sticks by me when times get hard, through my moans and groans and cooks me food to keep me in shape.
Winning the IBF International Super Lightweight Title must have felt awesome. How did you celebrate the win?
It was a great feeling winning the IBF for a second time at a second weight. Only this was even more special because I had a fight 4 days before in Walsall winning on points. Then the Monday I had a call to box in Wembley the following Saturday, bear in mind I hadn’t done a 10 rd fight for while. So I said yes, I’ll go for it, went home, checked my weight – I had 11lb to lose. So to the day, I lost 13lb, made the weight. Day of the fight my kids send me a good luck message by video and then there was no way I’m going home without that belt. Won by ko and celebrated big. I can’t remember it was that good. (laughs)
What would you recommend for a training camp diet?
Got to be fresh fish, veg, chicken, brown rice, fruit, salad, eggs, porridge, little and often. Plenty of water.
Name your 3 favourite boxers.
Roy Jones Jr. Ricky Hatton. Mike Tyson.
What’s your favourite boxing movie?
The one that gets every kid on their feet and wanting to be a boxer. Has to be Rocky 4 quality film.
Do you have a favourite saying, quote or mantra?
Never give up on your dreams. If you want it so much you can achieve anything.
And finally, what are your aims for 2018
To get my amateur license and hopefully get to professional coach as well and get some Champions coming through. And also build my clothing brand MG1983.
BCB Promotions have announced the signing of Kelcie ‘The Cannon’ Ball.
The Tamworth based boxer has penned a management deal as he looks to get back in title contention under his new promotional outfit but the 27 year-old will continue to train with Shaun Cogan at Smoking Joe’s Gym, Digbeth.
Ball suffered his one and only loss last time out as he slipped to defeat against Ryan Kelly for the Midlands Area Title back in September 2018. Since then ‘The Cannon’ has taken some time out of the sport to reflect and now has his sights set on making waves once again.
“I’m looking forward to a change for myself and my fans,” he told bcb-promotions.com. “I enjoyed my time working with Jon Pegg and Tommy Owens; they were good time me but a change can be refreshing for all.
“BCB have been making moves in an upward direction for the last couple years and it’s been on my mind for quite some time about joining the team.
“After big signings like Tommy Langford and Frankie Gavin, along with the great titles that the BCB have delivered for their fighters; it makes sense for me to come on board now as that is what I want. I want opportunities to fight for titles again.”
That first career defeat was a bitter blow for Ball, who has racked up nine wins since turning professional in 2015. It was a battle of two undefeated fighters from the same stable but, as disappointing as defeat was, Ball believes it has given his a new found perspective and hunger.
“Taking my first loss was a huge deal to me; especially how it happened.” he added. “I’ve taken some time out and have just been enjoying my life with friends and family.
“In many ways, the loss has helped me. I’ve got a great hunger back for the game. I let the whole show and occasion get the better of me, the last week of the camp for the Kelly fight was the worst days of my life. Making no excuses what so ever he was the better man on the night but the weight just killed me and I got it all wrong.
“I may make my return at middleweight but if something comes up at super welterweight I’m not ruling that either. I just want to enjoy my boxing again. It’s a new start for me.
“The key for me now is to get back in there, blow the cobwebs off and get my head down. I’m not looking after an unbeaten record any more so that may be the best thing that ever happened to me. It takes all the pressure away and I will just be going out there to do my best on the night against whatever fighter is in front of.
“I’m in boxing to be successful and to give the fans a good show. I’ll be back out in May so watch this space. Ball is back.”