West Rainton Ward brothers urged to avoid slip-ups in Houghton show

Boxers Martin and Tommy Ward.

Boxers Martin and Tommy Ward.

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Neil Fannan has warned his star boxers to avoid slipping on any banana skins when they climb through the ropes at the Rainton Meadows Arena tomorrow night.

The Ward brothers from West Rainton, Martin and Tommy, have foes from Baltic nations as they tune up for major championship tests in the early summer.

Martin tackles Latvia’s Dimitrijs Gutmans over six rounds, while Tommy goes over the same distance against Simas Volosinas, from Lithuania.

Tthere should be no sleepless nights this evening for the siblings.

But the trainer, as befits a coach of his standing, is refusing to take anything for granted and he feels his boxers will act in the same manner.

In fact, he insists there is pressure to perform given there are huge occasions around the corner.

Martin is to challenge Abigail Medina for the European super-bantamweight title, while Tommy has a May 13 confrontation for the British belt against holder, Jazza Dickens, in Leeds.

“I never tire of watching the lads box, “ said Fannan. “I’m looking forward to it.

“There is pressure on them given they have title fights coming up.

“They can’t afford any slip-ups, cuts, injuries etc.

“They need a bit of a performance.”

Their opponents are not unfamiliar – Tommy has beaten Martin’s opponent in the past and vice-versa.

“It’s funny, when the matches were made, both my lads warned each other,” said Fannan.

“Tommy said to Martin about Gutmans being strong and Martin mentioned about Volisinas being a tough lad.

“It was nice to hear them putting each other on their guards.”

Elsewhere on the bill, Fannan’s Daniel Cope faces vasty-experienced Midlander Kevin McCauley over four rounds.

“It’s not an easy fight,” said Fannan.

“But Daniel’s done plenty of sparring – he did six rounds with Basi Razaq and looked good.

“This is not a foregone conclusion. I expect a hard night’s work.

“But Daniel is coming into this fight on the back of winning the Northern Area title and I’m looking foer a performance to match his status.”

Sunderland cruiserweight Warren Baister will headline the 10-bout promotion at the Houghton venue.

Baister has been matched with former Olympian Christian Adjoufack in an eagerly-awaited contest.

The 31-year-old former GB international is unbeaten in four fights under Peterlee coach Dave Binns.

Adjoufack, from Cameroon, is relatively new to the pro game, but, like Baister, is vastly experienced in the amateur game and fought at the 2012 Olympics.

For tickets, contact Phil Jeffries on 07747 611020.