Boxing promoter Phil Jeffries has urged Sunderland to “turn out in force” for a fight “hero”.
Sunday’s Summer Rumble bill will be topped by Glenn Foot’s English title confrontation against undefeated light-welterweight prospect Akeem Brown.
This is a man who loves fighting, it’s as simple as thatPHIL JEFFRIES
The 29-year-old is making the maiden defence of the belt he won with a remorseless assault on London southpaw Philip Bowes in May.
Foot has never been a man to be preoccupied by home advantage, but, on this occasion, he demanded the Stadium of Light for his clash with the Gloucester boxer.
“Glenn will always tell you that a ring is a ring for him, no matter where it is,” said Jeffries. “He means it as well, you won’t meet as true a fighter as him.
“Glenn will fight anyone, anywhere, venues and reputations mean nothing to him, but as soon as he won at the York Hall he was insistent that he wanted to headline the Summer Rumble.
“He’s from just up the road from the Stadium of Light and this is a special moment for him. I hope the people of Sunderland, and beyond, turn out in force for him.
“He’s a hero, he went away and won the title, in the other lad’s backyard, and that was after he won an eliminator in the previous fight in the same circumstances.
“When he challenged for the British and Commonwealth welterweight titles, he did it in Manchester.
“This is a man who loves fighting, it’s as simple as that.
“It’s a chance for people around here to get behind one of their own at the greatest stadium in sport.”
Foot is taking something of a risk by taking part in a voluntary defence of the English crown. He is at the front of the queue for a shot at Tyrone Nurse, the Yorkshire boxer who has the British title.
And he is reputed to be in line for a high-profile televised bout on the autumn.
“There is a big, big fight for Glenn, but we’re not at liberty to discuss that just yet,” added Jeffries. “That is down to the promoter to announce.
“But Glenn’s desire to top the bill at the Stadium of Light is such he’s prepared to risk everything.”
Brown will be coming to Wearside to upset the applecart.
Just 21, the unbeaten South West fighter has clocked up eight wins from eight and is not short on confidence.
“You have to take your hat off to the kid,” said Jeffies. “I opened it up to the fighters in the North East first because the fans love a derby.
“But no-one would give it a go, but Brown and his people were and are right up for it.”
For tickets, call Phil on 07747 611020.