By Terence Dooley
Matchroom’s Eddie Hearn is on the hunt for even more Sky TV dates. Matchroom have an exclusive deal with the subscription broadcaster, which currently stands at 20 shows per year, but with six of the dates earmarked for the Prizefighter format the current allocation doesn’t provide enough action for hard-core fans. Hearn is now striving to add more dates to accommodate a stable of fighters that is growing by the day, and will be boosted by the addition of British and Commonwealth featherweight titlist Lee Selby at a press conference on Wednesday.
Selby, 14-1 (5), was engaged in talks with Hearn over the weekend, and the 26-year-old featured on a Matchroom card last month when beating former Martin Lindsay by unanimous decision. Indeed, Hearn told Kevin Mitchell of The Guardian that a further 10 Sky dates would help him secure the services of even more fighters, including a few amateur stars.
“That would give me a chance to sign [some] of these others,” he said. “I've got four five amateurs that I could sign, if we had the dates, and there are half a dozen existing champions who want to join who I'd love to sign, as well. You can't sign them all.”
Further Sky shows would be a welcome boost for British boxing fans, who were short-changed when Sky only released 20 dates last year. Sky’s recent ethos of bigger fights and stacked three-hour shows has been hit-and-miss, so 10 extra bills would be welcomed with open arms by boxing fans and would complement BoxNation’s domestic and greater International coverage. It would also help ease the irony of Sky broadcasting a dedicated magazine show, Ringside, more often than they show live fights.
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