Promoter Jeffries: I’ll quit if my Ess express loses!

Manager Phil Jeffries predicts big things for boxer Thomas Essomba
Manager Phil Jeffries predicts big things for boxer Thomas Essomba
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Phil Jeffries says he will quit boxing if Thomas Essomba loses his international fight with Robert Kanalas at the Summer Rumble.

The unbeaten Sunderland star will make his fourth professional appearance at the Stadium of Light event tomorrow.

Essomba had been due to face Kanalas for the inaugural British Promoters Association Classic Challenge flyweight belt.

But after “issues” over the status of the new competition, the 10-round fight with the Hungarian will no longer have any title status.

His manager and promoter though insists victory will move the skilful African closer to a Commonwealth title shot while he has designs on a world championship challenge in 2016.

“If Thomas doesn’t win this fight I’m going to pack boxing in,” Jeffries told the Echo.

“He can go all the way to the top, I’m sure of that.

“Thomas is a couple of fights away from a Commonwealth challenge and next year I think we can be looking at a World title.”

Essomba’s story is already a remarkable one.

After fighting for Cameroon at the 2012 Olympics, he decided against returning home and stayed in this country.

He moved to Sunderland, boxing in Jaffa’s Olympian Gym as an amateur before going pro.

Essomba, trained by Sean Casey, has looked good in his first three professional wins.

“I have invested a lot of time and money in him,” said Jeffries.

“That is how confident I am in this boy’s ability.

“I believe in him, he’s a great boxer, but such a nice lad too and I want to give him a chance in life.

“He came to live in this country from Cameroon with nothing.

“The lad boxes for free but I’m looking forward to the day he gets a good pay day.”

Kanalas will not be a pushover.

The 23-year-old has been beaten only twice in 11 contests and has an impressive KO record with seven of his nine victories coming inside the distance.

“I have high hopes for Thomas and great belief in his coach, Sean,” said Jeffries. “This will be a good fight and good win.”

Fellow Sunderland boxer Jonson McClumpha is also in action tomorrow, meeting Alistair Warren over four rounds.

Tickets can be purchased on the day at the main entrance at the Stadium of Light. Doors open at noon, with boxing due to start at 1pm.