Revealed! Sunderland fighter Josh Kelly's opponent for USA debut named - and Eddie Hearn thinks it's a HUGE step up in class

Sunderland's rising welterweight star Josh Kelly will make his USA fight debut against Ray Robinson on June 1 at Madison Square Garden.

Tuesday, 14th May 2019, 9:05 pm
Josh Kelly (Matchroom Boxing).

And promoter Eddie Hearn thinks the New York bout represents a big step up in class for the Commonwealth and WBA International strap holder.

"This is a great fight and a huge step-up for Josh on the biggest stage possible," said Matchroom Boxing supremo Hearn.

"Robinson clearly won last time out and is an accomplished fighter that will test him in every department.

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"This is the stage for him to shine, in front of a sold out MSG broadcast all over the world – June 1 we will really find out what PBK is all about."

Kelly is coming off the back of a classy, convincing points victory over previously unbeaten Polish contender Przemyslaw Runowski.

In that fight the 25-year-old suffered a suspected fractured hand, which had put his place on the Anthony Joshua undercard in severe doubt. But the injury proved not to be as bad as first feared.

Robinson, who has beaten Amir Khan conqueror Breidis Prescott in the past, will be an even bigger test, though, coming off the back of a harshly scored draw against WBO number one welterweight contender Egidijus Kavaliauskas in March in Philadelphia.

“Robinson is a very good opponent," said Ryhope fighter Kelly.

"He’s a good boxer with an awkward southpaw style so it’s another good test for me.

"It’s going to be a great fight and a night to enjoy. I get a lot of support from people in the U.S so it’s nice to have an opportunity to put on a performance in front of them.”