PHIL Jeffries launched this year’s Summer Rumble fight night at the Stadium of Light with a warning that televised bouts are not the “golden ticket” many up-and-coming fighters imagine they are.
And he lavished praise on the boxers who are prepared to commit to grass roots shows like the annual Rumble.
The North East has had a number of high profile televised fight nights in the last year and while Jeffries is an admirer and supporter of such events he points out sometimes they do local boxers no favours.
“There are some boxers who think televised shows are the be all and end all, but they are not,” he said.
“There are boxers who think it will do wonders for their profile, but the cameras only cover the main events and they don’t get a look-in.
“Sometimes they don’t get treated as well as they should because they get mucked around by the schedules – sometimes they’re going to be on last and they they’re on first, sometimes they’re down to go on straight away and end up being pushed further and further back.
“The other thing they think is that it is going to be worth a lot of money to them as a payday but then they find the opposite is true and it’s the homegrown shows they should be looking.
“All the boxers on the bill for the Summer Rumble are involved in fights which I see as being close and exciting and they’ve signed up that.
“I think it’s great that that’s the sort of fellas they are – they want to fight and they don’t care where and when – and I think this is going to be a Rumble to remember for North East boxing fans.
“We’ve got some cracking derby fights on, we’ve got titles to be fought for and we’ve got some really interesting stories with these boxers.
“I’m really looking forward to it.”
The 10-bout Stadium of Light card will be topped by two intriguing local battles.
Sunderland’s Jonson McClumpha will fight Horden’s Greg O’Neil for the Northern Area middleweight title, while the evening’s feature fight will see Sunderland’s Lee Mould fight Fishburn’s Gary Fox for the Northern Area light-welterweight belt.
The night will also see the return from injury of Sunderland’s Glenn Foot, the Sky Prizefighter champion.
Also in action will be two-time Olympian Thomas Essomba, former amateur champion Daniel Cope, unbeaten pro Anthony Hardy, Tom Whitfield, Bazi Razak and Newbottle’s Lynden Watt.
Tickets for the day are priced from £35, while tickets for the VIP Lounge, including a Sunday carvery, are priced £45.
There are also a small number of executive boxes available for £700, including a three-course meal with table service and a private balcony for 10 people.