Sunderland boxers Josh Kelly and Pat McCormack return to action on Channel 5

Sunderland-born boxer Josh Kelly will fight for the WBO international super welterweight belt in Newcastle later this month at the Vertu Motors Arena in Newcastle.

Ryhope’s Kelly (11-1-1, 7 KOs) will be counting on the support of the North East to get him over the line when he competes against Lucas Bastida (18-1-1, 10 KOs) for the WBO International Super Welterweight Championship on Saturday, July 30 at the Vertu Motors Arena in Newcastle.

The show will be free-to-air and live on Channel 5 and will also feature Sunderland Olympian, Pat McCormack.

This fight presents a chance for one of these fighters to break into the world ranking with the WBO. After a dominant performance against Peter Kramer last time out, Kelly will be looking to carry that confidence to cement himself into the world rankings.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - JUNE 17: Josh Kelly makes his way to the ring during the Super Welterweight fight between Josh Kelly and Peter Kramer as part of the Wasserman fight night at M&S Bank Arena on June 17, 2022 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)

Alongside the reward of a world ranking also comes big fights. With the division being held up by undisputed champion Jermell Charlo, Kelly is aiming to reintroduce himself dramatically onto the global scene of the super welterweight division.

He said: “I'm buzzing, and I’m ready. There's no reason to sugar-coat the fact that my opponent will be putting even more into training to come and try to cause an upset. We are covering all bases in camp, and when you have world title aspirations you make sure you're preparing like a world champion.”

“The WBO belt adds that additional spice to things, and it's about me going out there and being Josh Kelly that will see it leaving the arena with me in front of my friends and family. We are the North East, and we don't do things in half-measures. On fight night, I'll be there to push the pace and show why this will be the first belt of many.”

“Josh Kelly fighting for titles feels like one of the most natural things in boxing,” said Kelly’s promoter Kalle Sauerland. “His pedigree and his ability rightfully have him fighting for the WBO International belt when we blow the roof off the Vertu Motors Arena. This will stick Josh's name exactly where it belongs and sets up an exciting future where massive fights can be made for our former Olympian. Newcastle, be ready!”

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