THE SMILE PAINTED across the face of Daniel Dubois following his resounding destruction of Bogdan Dinu on Saturday night told its own story.
The usually reserved Daniel generally doesn’t give much away with words or expression, but there was no hiding his natural joy and relief over having got his career firmly back on track.
There was pressure on the young man, along with the pent up frustration of taking a loss and not immediately being able to put it right due to injury. He was right back in the firing line over in Telford and I am sure there must have been nerves and a degree of trepidation because he is only human, after all.
The nerves clearly dispersed in the opening moments because there was a confidence about Daniel that quickly returned to his work as he jumped back on the heavyweight horse after a fall.
It was a notable win over a highly-ranked opponent that pretty much puts him right back where he was before his encounter with Joe Joyce late last year.
What I will say is that we didn’t work hard to carve out this opportunity for him to win a title for decoration. This victory sees to it that Daniel is in line for a shot at the WBA world title currently in the possession of Trevor Bryan, who fights under the Don King banner over in the States.
This would represent an ideal test and stepping stone for Daniel in his career progression and we will be pushing the WBA to call on the fight. If this goes ahead, which it should, it would mean we can keep Daniel moving along in meaningful fights with his new trainer Shane McGuigan and ever-present manager Martin Bowers.
The heavyweight logjam at the top end probably won’t clear for some considerable time now if events play out as anticipated. Tyson Fury is going into his trilogy fight with Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua, unless he drops a belt, must deal with a mandatory defence of his WBO title.
If Tyson and AJ both come through unscathed then the obvious intention is for them to finally get it on in what would be a two-fight blockbuster.
So, if the best laid plans come to pass, there are not many gaps in the heavyweight market to be exploited. This makes it so important for Daniel to press home his newly-won advantage with the WBA and put himself right in pole position for when the titles come back into play.
The same is true for Big Joe. Unfortunately for the Juggernaut, plans for his assault on the top end of the division were delayed and thwarted by uncertainty over the Tyson-AJ fight. As WBO mandatory, Oleksandr Usyk wouldn’t sign up to an Interim world title fight with Joe until the battle of the Brits was over the line – and even then there remained a legal challenge from his side.
Now, with Tyson fighting Wilder, Usyk can exercise his right to a Joshua fight and Joe will be in mandatory challenger position to the winner.
It is a pity that Joe couldn’t jump straight into the Ukyk fight after patiently waiting for the situation to resolve itself, but we will have him back in action in a big fight on either July 24 or 31.
If both Joe and Daniel do the business in their next fights, we should be in a position of having Joe as mandatory for the WBO world title and the same for Daniel with the WBO, meaning we are future-proofing the world heavyweight titles for British fighters.
Back to Saturday night and, I have to say, it was a madhouse inside the Telford International Centre as we welcomed fans back into the fighting fold. It made such a positive difference to the evening’s events and the thousand fans made it sound like we had a full house.
Tommy Fury clocked up some valuable rounds and experience in his sixth fight against a very game Jordan Grant. I have to keep reiterating that Tommy is a work in progress who is learning on the job. He will come under additional scrutiny due to his summer of love on reality TV, but our job is to shape him up as a fighter and we cannot afford to be distracted or influenced by his popularity on social media.
Most of the fans, obviously, were there to see the Son of Stoke, Nathan Heaney, get another win under his belt and strengthen his case for a middleweight title shot. Our new signing, bantamweight Liam Davies, also attracted a massive following and I am looking forward to seeing more of him as we continue to put down further roots in the Midlands.
Another middleweight, Belfast’s Caoimhin Agyarko, is really starting to look the part and it was the most relaxed in the ring I have seen him in taking out Ernesto Olvera inside three rounds. It was only Caoimhin’s ninth fight as a pro, but he is already looking like a seasoned campaigner and I don’t believe there is any limit to what he can achieve.
Another debut-maker for us was 18-year-old welterweight George Bance who, I am told, is the youngest licence holder on the circuit. He carried a reputation of being a fearsome operator up from the amateurs and he didn’t give Jordan Ellison a look-in over four rounds on his opening night. Ellison is a proper test for fighters much more experienced than young George.
Well done also to Adan Mohamed, our young super bantam who doubled his win tally in fight No. 2 as a pro.
Stay tuned to our social channels for news of our July shows, which will be dropping very soon.