By Keith Idec
Promoter Eddie Hearn confirmed Thursday that Kell Brook will return to the ring sometime in July.
Hearn hasn’t announced the exact date for that fight, nor has he stated who Brook will fight or where the bout will take place. All he told Sky Sports for a story posted to the British network’s website Thursday is that Brook will fight sometime in July.
The 32-year-old Brook bounced back from his knockout loss to Errol Spence Jr. in his debut as a full-fledged junior middleweight March 3. The former IBF welterweight champ knocked out Sergey Rabchenko (29-3, 22 KOs) in the second round of that scheduled 10-rounder at Sheffield Arena in Sheffield, England, Brook’s hometown.
Whoever Brook boxes in July, both he and Hearn hope he’ll eventually win his way toward a lucrative domestic showdown with rival Amir Khan. England’s Khan (32-4, 20 KOs) signed a three-fight promotional deal with Hearn’s Matchroom USA earlier this year and has repeatedly expressed interest in finally fighting Brook.
Khan knocked out Toronto’s Phil Lo Greco (28-4, 15 KOs) in the first round of his first fight in nearly two years April 21 at Echo Arena in Liverpool, England.
Before beating Belarus’ Rabchenko, Brook (37-2, 26 KOs) hadn’t fought since Spence knocked him out in the 11th round of their welterweight title fight last May 27 at Bramall Lane in Sheffield.
Brook suffered a fractured orbital bone in a second straight fight while losing to the unbeaten Spence. He had reconstructive surgery following that loss, this time to repair his left eye socket, and remained out of the ring for nine months.
In his previous fight, Gennady Golovkin (38-0-1, 34 KOs) fractured the orbital bone around Brook’s right eye on his way to winning their middleweight title bout by fifth-round technical knockout in September 2016 at O2 Arena in London. Brook had surgery to fix that injury and didn’t fight for more than eight months, until he made a mandatory defense of his IBF 147-pound championship against Spence (23-0, 20 KOs).
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.