JONSON McClumpha’s title fight at the Summer Rumble next weekend has been improved a SECOND time with the boxer now set to battle for the International Masters middleweight belt.
The Sunderland fighter was originally due to box Horden’s Greg O’Neill for the vacant Northern Area title next Sunday, July 13, only for O’Neill to pull out with personal problems.
Show promoter Phil Jeffries managed to rescue McClumpha’s fight hopes by lining up a shot at the vacant British Masters middleweight title.
But now Jeffries has gone one better and McClumpha will fight Doncaster-based Jason Ball for the even more prestigious vacant International Masters middleweight belt.
It’s a great bit of news for a show hit by a string of injuries and late withdrawals and Jeffries says he is absolutely delighted for a boxer who he describes as: “as professional as they come.”
Jeffries told the Echo: “I’m thrilled for Jonson because he has had to be so patient this year with fights not coming off for him.
“And it’s fantastic that he now has this opportunity to land an international belt and in front of home fans too.”
McClumpha will now headline the event with fellow Sunderland fighters Greg O’Neill and Glenn Foot providing support.
Mould had been ready to fight Fishburn’s Gary Fox for the Northern Area light welterweight title, only for Fox to tear a hamstring.
Mould will now appear on the bill in a local derby - taking on Newcastle’s john Watson over six rounds.
Foot’s comeback fight, against Brighton veteran Kevin McCauley, after a potentially career-threatening arm injury has attracted a lot of interest, while the bill will also feature the professional debut of two-time Cameroon Olympian, the now Sunderland-based light-flyweight Thomas Essomba and a string of other North East fights.
But it is the McClumpha fight which will garner greatest interest for a 23-year-old who has endured a frustrating 2014 after a couple of years disrupted by a long-term foot injury.
Jeffries said: “”Jonson could have fought three times this year already but each time the fight was called off and he’s been left kicking his heels.
“It says everything about him though that he has kept himself fighting fit through all that time and through the disappointments.
“He’s just kept himself near enough ready to fight in the hope that a fight would come along soon and he was devastated when I first told him the O’Neill fight was off.
“Now though he’s gone from a northern area to a British to an international and this is now a fantastic opportunity for him.
“I’m delighted for him but I’m also delighted for the show because it’s great that we’ve got a fight of that stature on the bill.
“It’s great for the region’s boxing fans too and the tickets have been selling really well.
“The likes of Jonson and Glenn Foot are big local draws anyway and sell a lot of tickets and Summer Rumble 4 could be our biggest event yet with both the seats and the executive boxes selling quickly.”
* Tickets for the show are available from the boxers themselves or from Jeffries on 0774 7611020.