O’SULLIVAN AND SELKIRK CLASH AT LIVERPOOL OLYMPIA
Gary O’Sullivan and Joe Selkirk clash in an exciting match of unbeaten fighters on Friday 12th April at the Liverpool Olympia.
Irish hero O’Sullivan, the WBO International Middleweight Champion, defends his title against hot Liverpool prospect Joe Selkirk as chief support to Paul Butler’s Commonwealth Super-Flyweight title challenge.
The show will be televised live and exclusive on the Home of Champions BoxNation (Sky Ch. 437/Virgin Ch. 546).
O’Sullivan, 28, was in action last July at West Ham United’s ground on the David Haye-Dereck Chisora undercard when he defeated Manchester puncher Matthew Hall over twelve rounds to claim the vacant title.
Known as the Celtic Rebel and trained by Paschal Collins - the brother of former WBO World Super-Middleweight Champion Steve, O’Sullivan is unbeaten in 15 fights with 9 stoppages.
“I’m the champion and I’m relishing the chance to go to Liverpool and defend my title against Selkirk in his back yard. I’ve boxed all over the place in America, Scotland and England, as well as in Ireland. It doesn’t phase me or bother me that I’m on his patch, it really appeals to me. I won the title on the road and now I’m defending it on the road. Selkirk’s a good tough fighter, he just wants to fight and so do I, the best will rise. I believe I’ve got the tools to beat him, but it’s going to be an exciting fight.”
Selkirk is eager to be the next big star to emerge on the thriving Merseyside boxing scene.
The former amateur sensation, who won an ABA title and competed in the Junior Olympics, has put in some eye-catching performance in the pros, so far racking up an unbeaten 10 fight record and stopping 5 early.
Selkirk says challenging for the first title in his career will take his performance to another level.
He said, “I’m really excited about this one, I’m treating it like a world title. O’Sullivan is a good fighter, I’m not going to knock him, he’s unbeaten and has got a good record. I’m unbeaten as well and I’m looking forward to testing myself against him. I know how good I am and how good I can become and this is the fight where it will come out. This is the type of fight that I need to get the best out of me and you’ll see that.”
Ellesmere Port sensation Butler headlines a talent packed show when he challenges Commonwealth Super-Flyweight Champion Kareem for the title. Also on the card is Ellesmere Port’s Matthew Fagan; Liverpool’s former British Super-Featherweight Champion Stephen Smith; Lincoln light-heavyweight Calum Johnson; Welsh prospects Craig Evans (super-feather) and Liam Williams (Clydach Vale).
Remaining tickets priced at £30, £40 and £60 are available from Eventim on 0844 249 1000 or eventim.co.uk
Watch Butler v Kareem and O’Sullivan v Selkirk live and exclusive on BoxNation (Sky Ch. 437/Virgin Ch. 546) on Saturday 12th April. To join go to www.boxnation.com
JAZZA HAS FAITH IN HIS ABILITY
LIVERPOOL livewire James "Jazza" Dickens says his religious faith is the driving force behind his success inside the ring.
Dickens, 21, challenges for the vacant English super-bantamweight title against Jon Fernandez in a rare meeting of unbeaten prospects on March 30.
And while hoping to one day go onto British, European and world level, he believes he wouldn't have got this far if it wasn't for finding God at the age of 17.
"Without God I wouldn't be where I am," he said. "I dedicate everything I do to God because without Him I wouldn't have the strength to train like I do and I wouldn't have the hunger that I've got.
"A lot of lads my age go out to parties, they drink and some take drugs and get into bother. I don't do any of that. Where I spend my life is in the gym and in church.
"I'm not throwing the bible at people, I just think more boxers should think about religion because if they got what I get from it they'd really benefit.
"I found god properly when I was 17 and I haven't lost a round of boxing since."
Without doubt Fernandez will be looking to change that at the end of the month.
The Southampton man himself hasn't dropped many rounds since turning professional in 2009 and last time out won the Southern Area crown by beating Jamie Speight.
Jazza's not one to spend much time studying his opponents, but he knows that Fernandez will be a stiff challenge from a past encounter.
"I sparred Fernandez years ago," he revealed. "At the time I think he'd had two or three fights and I was just turning professional myself.
"It was a really good spar, but I can't look too much into it because obviously we've both improved since then."
He added "I'd be so proud to be English champion and god willing I will be.
"I believe this is also going to an eliminator for the British title, so hopefully I can move on quickly to another big fight."
Heavyweight contender Manuel Charr has to undergo surgery in Cologne today because of a meniscal tear. He already had the injury going into his last fight against Yakup Saglam on February 22nd in Galti, Romania.
"I was in pain and couldn’t stand properly but I wanted to fight anyways", says Charr. "Lots of fans recognized that I was overweight. That’s because I could barely move in the last part of training camp. All I did was standing in front of the heavy bag and throwing some combinations. I couldn’t do any roadwork at all. Still I wanted that fight because I am so focused on my big goal to become heavyweight champion of the world. And I won’t be stopped on my way – not even by a serious injury!"
Former world champions Ruslan Chagaev and Firat Arslan withdrew from fighting Saglam last December. Charr took the fight – even with a meniscal tear. "I know how it feels to be ducked and avoided so I wanted to give Yakup the chance to fight at all", states Charr. "I am a fighter and I know that he is a fighter, too. We just cannot stand preparing for a fight which is canceled last minute. That’s why I took the risk and stepped into that ring."
The "Diamond Boy" didn’t look too good in the first round of the bout against Saglam. Obviously he was distracted by the injury. Still he fought his way into the bout and dominated the second round before Saglam had to give up due to an old shoulder injury.
"I know that this was quite risky. It could have been the other way around very easily. But in the end I won so it was worth taking the risk. No I can undergo surgery and then prepare for my next fights."
After today’s surgery Charr will be hospitalized for a week before he can start rehab training. "Of course, I want to return to action as soon as possible but I also know that I got to take one step at a time", says the "Diamond Boy". "If everything goes well I might be back in regular training in three or fours weeks. But of course, we have to see how the surgery goes first and then listen to what the doctors say."