JOSH Kelly will make his first appearance in the ring this week since capturing a bronze medal at the World Youth Championships in December.
The 18-year-old Houghton ABC fighter came back from Armenia with the medal after earning a surprise call-up to the Great Britain squad.
But his GB credentials have been enhanced not just by the podium performance but by further calls to train with the national squad in Sheffield since then.
The teenager, from Barnes in Sunderland, has just returned from a training camp last week which holds out the prospect of him being added to future provisional podium squads.
And he hopes to build on the momentum by impressing in the England v Sweden ABA boxing international at the Rainton Meadows Arena tomorrow night.
Houghton ABC have been involved in the organisation of the show and were today hosting their Swedish visitors.
Tomorrow’s event at the Arena features two female and five male international contests with a host of support bouts, which includes Sunderland ABC’s Travis Waters taking on Forest Hall’s Terry Wilkinson.
Kelly will face Clarence Goryn in the 64kg light-welterweight division.
The Swede expecting to be given clearance to come into the fight a couple of kilos heavier, which will increase the challenge the Sunderland teenager faces on home territory.
Josh’s father, Paul, who is also a coach at Houghton, said: “Josh is looking forward to fighting again.
“He’s had a real boost from the encouragement that he’s been getting from the GB coaches, but he knows he’ll have his work cut out for him tomorrow night.
“For the club and Tyne and Wear ABA, it’s a bit of a coup to be hosting such a prestigious show and it’s great that local fans will get to see international boxing on their doorsteps.”
Tickets for the show remain available, priced £15 (adults), £5 (under-16s and over 65s). Doors open at 7pm.
For more information ring 0753 506 3450.
H David Price is confident he can get his world title ambitions back on track despite Saturday night’s shocking second-round stoppage defeat to Tony Thompson.
The touted Liverpool heavyweight saw his dreams derailed when American veteran Thompson tore up the script by catching him with a punch on the ear which left Price on the canvas with his senses scrambled.
The British champion got back to his feet but was on unsteady legs when referee Steve Gray called a halt to the fight, sending the 6,000 Liverpool Echo Arena crowd into a stunned silence.