By Elliot Foster

Daniel Dubois could fight in a major step-up in the paid code in 2018.

The Southern Area and WBC Youth heavyweight champion, who is 5-0 since turning over back in April, has been nominated for a shot at the vacant English crown.

Dubois returns to the ring on December 9, at the Copper Box Arena in London, against Dorian Darch –– a former Anthony Joshua opponent –– as he looks to continue his development on a card topped by James DeGale and Lee Selby in respective defences of their IBF super-middleweight and IBF featherweight titles.

But after his fight with Darch next month, Dubois could come up against Nick Webb (11-0, 9 KOs) after the British Boxing Board of Control put the contest out to purse bids.

The belt had been set to be contested on November 11 at the Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle when Webb was meant to meet Nathan Gorman, but Gorman ended up boxing Germany’s Mohamed Soltby on the ‘No Ifs, No Buts’ card and stopped him in the fifth round to win the vacant WBC International Silver heavyweight belt.

The opening of the bids for Webb vs. Dubois will be on December 13, with the fight to take place no later than March 2018.

Other Board notice updates

Tommy Langford will defend his British middleweight title against Jack Arnfield on February 10 at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool after Steve Wood won the purse bids, while new dates and venues are awaited for Matty Askin’s British cruiserweight title defence against Stephen Simmons and Frank Buglioni’s mandated British light-heavyweight title defence against Commonwealth champion Callum Johnson.

Ukashir Farooq is set to face Scott Allan in a British bantamweight title eliminator on November 23 at the St Andrew’s Sporting Club in Paisley, Scotland and the British super-welterweight title final eliminator between James Metcalf and English champion Ted Cheeseman has been put out to purse bids.

Cheeseman’s English crown will be at stake on the night and with that ‘The Big Cheese’ will take 60 per cent of the purse.

John O’Donnell vs. Tamuka Muchapondwa will clash on February 16, 2018 at the Indigo at the O2. The fight has been mooted for several months and is finally set to happen, with the Board warning that final eliminator status will be withdrawn if it happens any later than the given date.

Boxing Scene understands that Joe Joyce –– the Hayemaker Ringstar-signed heavyweight who returns on December 17 at the O2 Arena in London as part of the undercard to Tony Bellew’s Sky Sports Box Office-aired heavyweight rematch against David Haye –– will also feature on the card.

Joe Hughes withdrew from a final eliminator for the British super-lightweight title against Johnny Coyle and Steve Wood is to promote Ryan Walsh’s British featherweight title defence versus his man Isaac Lowe on either February 3 or February 17 at a venue to be confirmed.

The status of Martin J Ward’s British super-featherweight crown will be decided at the Board’s December meeting.

When it comes to English titles, Nisse Sauerland won the purse bids to stage Arfan Iqbal’s cruiserweight title defence against Simon Vallily and Stefy Bull is set to promote Declan Spelman vs. Scott Westgarth in an eliminator for the light-heavyweight title on February 24 in Doncaster, with Liam Conroy defending the title against Chris Hobbs in Chorley on November 25.

The winner of the fight between Conroy and Hobbs must defend against Miles Shinkwin.

A new date for the vacant English super-flyweight title contest between Loua Nasser and Bradley Watson is awaited from promoter Dennis Hobson, but it is set to happen at the Royal Jersey Showground in Jersey.

November 25 is the date for a Bilston clash between Ricky Summers and Joe Sherriff in an English light-heavyweight title eliminator.

Josh Kennedy has been ordered to defend his English super-bantamweight title against Lucien Reid, Jordan Gill vs. Ben Jones has been ordered for the vacant English featherweight title after Samir Mouneimne relinquished and Myron Mills waits in the wings as Lee Appleyard is to defend his English lightweight bauble against Marcus Ffrench.

Meanwhile, Darryll Williams vs. Lennox Clarke has been ordered as ‘Ferocious’ looks to keep hold of his super-middleweight title.

And Elliott Matthews will face Grant Dennis for the vacant English middleweight crown on December 1 at York Hall in Bethnal Green, London, with Mark Prior promoting.

In other news, Harvey Horn –– the former Team GB star amateur –– will make his professional debut next month.

Horn, 22, is campaigning at super-flyweight and, after signing a deal with Frank Warren and Queensberry Promotions, will fight for the first time in the pro ranks on December 9 at the Copper Box Arena in London, with the show being screened exclusively live on BT Sport and BoxNation.