Josh Kelly (11-1-1, 7 KOs) leads a star-studded line up as he continues his World Title pursuit with a mouth-watering clash against top Argentinian contender Lucas Bastida (18-1-1, 10 KOs) for the WBO International Super Welterweight Championship as part of a huge night of action on Saturday July 30 at the Vertu Motors Arena, live on Channel 5.
Kelly returns to the ring following an impressive stoppage victory over Peter Kramer on June 17 in Liverpool, which was watched by over 1 million viewers on Channel 5. The Sunderland boxer, who represented Team GB at the 2016 Rio Olympics and has previously held Commonwealth and WBA International Welterweight Titles, can expect one of his toughest career tests when he takes on ‘El Tornado’, the current South American Middleweight Champion, who will be coming to spoil the party and catapult himself into World Title contention.
Also on the card is Harlem Eubank (14-0, 6 KOs) who will be looking to establish himself as the latest star name from his famous boxing family. The nephew of British boxing legend Chris Eubank Snr and cousin of Chris Eubank Jr had initially been lined up to face Tom Farrell, but will now meet Mexico’s Eliot Chavez (11-4-1, 6 KOs) in a hotly anticipated Super Lightweight showdown after Farrell’s withdrawal due to a positive COVID-19 test.
Joining Kelly and Eubank in action, Tokyo 2020 Olympic Silver Medallist Pat McCormack (1-0, 1 KO) goes in search of his second professional victory against Dimitri Trenel (8-1, 4 KOs). One of the North East’s most exciting boxing prospects, McCormack has an unbelievable pedigree from his time in the amateurs. Alongside his Olympic Silver medal, he has claimed European and Commonwealth Gold and World Silver medals. Now, looking to prove himself in the paid ranks, the 27-year-old cannot wait to showcase his skills and add another win to his record.
Another title fight features on the stacked North East takeover card, as one of Birmingham’s best, Raza Hamza (16-0, 7 KOs), competes for the IBO International Featherweight Championship against Roberto Rodriguez Nucamendi (13-5, 10 KOs) over 10 rounds of elite boxing action.
Fans can also look forward to a battle of the undefeated Heavyweights as undefeated prospects Hosea Stewart (2-0) and Franklin Ignatius (3-0, 1 KO) square off, plus an array of local fighters ready to prove the North East as a hotbed for boxing talent.
The stage is set for Newcastle’s Jordan Barker-Porter (4-1) to make it three-straight wins as the 28-year-old Lightweight returns to action for an all-British battle in her home city. Her opponent, Bec Connolly (3-14) will be looking to call upon her vast experience, having faced current world champion Natasha Jonas, as well as former world champion Terri Harper.
Darlington’s Ben Marksby (4-0) can continue his undefeated streak at Super Lightweight when he fights for the first time in the North East. A popular fighter with a loyal following, Marksby faces off against the resilient Rustem Fatkhullin (8-37, 3 KOs).
2018 Commonwealth Games Gold medallist Lisa Whiteside (3-0, 1 KO) will look to emulate her previous performance by producing another stoppage win in her Flyweight bout, when she faces off against a well-schooled fighter in Serbia’s Jasmina Nad (11-24-5, 4 KOs).
Straight out of Rocky IV, Heavyweight ‘Drago’ Steve Robinson (4-1) will be hunting for another blockbuster finish when the 6’7” giant from Newcastle looks to provide a finish worthy of his nickname. Future prospect Kai Richmond (1-0) will also be aiming to get the crowd on their feet after a comprehensive professional debut for the 22-year-old from Spennymoor earlier this year.