Posts Tagged ‘Kevin Mitchell’
Unbeaten professional boxer Bradley Saunders in hardest
training yet in preparation for fourth professional outing
On The Undercard Of Battle of Britain
Relishing the chance to fight on the undercard of the highly anticipated Battle of Britain show, the Light Welterweight from County Durham has been training harder than ever to continue his unbeaten run since his professional debut in February this year.
Scotland’s Ricky Burns and England’s Kevin Mitchell will headline in the blockbuster showdown that ignites the Auld rivalry once again. Burns will put his WBO World Lightweight title on the line against his long-time rival Mitchell on Saturday 22nd September in Glasgow.
“It’s been the longest camp I’ve ever done; it’s been really full on. It’ll be 10 weeks come fight night. It’s been really good sparring with a two weight world champion in Burns. Ricky’s a gritty lad who’s really adaptable; can box back foot or dig in and have a fight. We both really go for it. It’s far more a fight than a technical spar so it’s been tremendous for me.”
The talented 26 year old from Sedgefield has also been sparring with seasoned boxers; former British Champion Ashley Theophane and former WBU World Champion Derry Mathews.
With around one hundred England and Great Britain appearances on his CV, Bradley Saunders was the most experienced amateur international of this millennium. The hard hitting former world championship medallist and 2008 Beijing Olympian is expecting that practice to propel him to the major professional titles as soon as possible.
“I’m really confident; I always played at it as amateur, cutting corners, late nights etc. but not now. So as long as I know I’ve done my part in the gym, I know I’ll be ok.”
Life outside of the gym can be just as important to a boxer and Saunders is confident and reassured by the support of friends and family.
“My personal life couldn’t be better right now; I’m surrounded by proper people. My family are really good and my brother Jeff, a 6 time British champion, just joined the army so I wish him all the best.
The support is the best ever, really good, getting better with every fight. They’re coming from everywhere for this fight, over 200 travelling up and couldn’t thank each and every one of them enough. After my first three pro outings in London, this will be a bit closer to home for my supporters”
So far the history bodes well for this popular sportsman and the future looks promising too. It takes a few wins before opportunities and sponsors come knocking so the key for Saunders is to fight regularly and successfully.
“After this I can see me being out another couple of times this year. They’re moving me on well and I’m on all the big bills so I think they are expecting big things. So all I can do is train hard, be dedicated and deliver. It’s my intention to shine every fight. You hear some prospects say they want the experience of the rounds but not me. I never take my foot off the gas and, if I get the opponent hurt, I’ll be very keen to go all out and put ‘em away. I want people talking about me after every fight.”
The Battle of Britain featuring Bradley Saunders and world title fight between Burns v Mitchell will be televised live and exclusive on BoxNation (Sky Channel 456 and Virgin Channel 546). For tickets call 07414 112 022 or visit Bradley’s official website www.bradleysaunders.com or follow the rising star on Twitter @BradSaunders_
Photos and Report by Gianluca (Rio) Di Caro
‘Mighty’ Kevin Mitchell made a welcome return to the ring on Friday night, when he took on Spain based Dominican Felix Lora in a ten round non-championship bout in front of a packed house at York Hall in Bethnal Green.
The Dagenham Destroyer seemed unfazed that the bout was touted as just a warm up bout, ahead of a summer showdown with WBO Lightweight World Champion Ricky Burns, as Mitchell seemed almost as fired up as he was when he faced John Murray back last year.
Whilst it wasn’t the liveliest of starts, as both fighters felt each other out, it soon livened up and see Mitchell using his incredibly accurate jab and superior movement to frustrate Lora.
Late on the raucous crowd jumped to their feet, as Lora fell to the canvas. The cheers faded as soon as they realised it was just a slip, but seconds later the crowd were back on their feet as Mitchell went straight back on the attack.
A much livelier start to the second round see Mitchell start to pressure Lora, picking him off with ease utilising his jab and some powerful rights to the body, and it wasn’t long before the big crowd were on their feet cheering again, as again Lora made a visit to the canvas, this time it was the real deal.
Lora had started to apply some pressure of his own, Mitchell used his excellent movement to avoid everything Lora threw at him before letting rip with a wickedly quick and accurate countering left.
After the count Mitchell went straight on the attack in a very controlled way, Lora used his head and grabbed hold of the advancing Mitchell. Once his head had cleared Lora tried to keep Mitchell on the backfoot, however Mitchell with his back to the rope proves to an extremely elusive target.
For the next few rounds Mitchell produced a boxing masterclass par excellence, easily controlling the rounds using his world class ring craft. Just as comfortable on the backfoot as he is on the attack Mitchell would pick off Lora, with sharp jabs, lightning fast one twos and uppercuts, at will each time the Dominican came in range.
Lora was fired up big time when he came out for the fifth, he was angry and full of vengeful intention. Virtually every punch the Dominican threw was fully loaded, however whilst he had Mitchell on the back foot and defending, the Dagenham man’s ring craft is honed to perfection.
Just as in the Murray fight, Mitchell backed on the rope is an elusive target, virtually every exocet Lora fired was avoided with comparable ease, that is until the Dominican landed a peach that shook Mitchell. Lora then turned up the pressure but Mitchell is well savvy and boxed beautifully off the backfoot as Lora chased him around the ring.
Lora must have thought that another one his bombs had penetrated Mitchell’s excellent defense in the final seconds, as Mitchell went down, after slipping on water close to Lora’s corner.
It got a little heated as the round concluded, Mitchell and Lora stood their ground, squared up to one another and pushed their foreheads together in an old fashioned face off fashion until referee Richie Davis intervened and dispatched the pair to their respective corners.
Mitchell’s coach, Jimmy Tibbs, calmed his charge before start of the sixth, and normal service resumed. Mitchell again was in full control, utilising his exquisite jab to control the next couple of rounds with ease.
Lora was again fired up at the start of the tenth and final round, going straight on the attack with massive exocets. Mitchell, again with his back to the ropes, avoided the Dominican’s big overhand rights with ease.
Mitchell then turned the tables on Lora in the final minute and let rip with a big right hand that had ‘lights out’ written all over it. In an instant Lora throws his arms around Mitchell to buy a few precious seconds in which to clear his head to enable him to see the round out.
No surprise Mitchell gets the nod from referee Richie Davies, quite rightly, by a 98-92 points margin.
Word is ‘Mighty’ Mitchell will do one more warm up bout before facing Ricky Burns at Upton Park in the Summer. Taking it on Friday’s performance I personally don’t think he needs it. Whilst yes he cruised his way through big parts of the bout, he also showed that he could step things up whenever he needed to and his defensive ringcraft was faultless throughout. It was a five star performance by Dagenham’s finest, even without the incentive of adding another belt to his collection.
Preceding Mitchell-Lora see Penge’s ‘Super’ Bradley Skeete easily outclass Hungarian challenger Laszlo Komjathi in an eight rounder.
As with Mitchell, Skeete put on a masterclass display to easily out point Komjathi, who has previously fought such stalwarts as Giuseppi Lauri, Michael Jennings, Rafal Jackiewicz, Marcos Maidana and Andriy Kotelnik.
Komjathi likes to box of the front foot, which played into Skeete’s hands as he could pick off the Hungarian at will, with stiff jabs and three punch combinations, each time he came in range.
Routine stuff for the first couple of rounds, but come the third Skeete took the fight to Komjathi, making life very uncomfortable for the Hungarian after forcing him onto the back foot.
Skeete was in a groove, letting rip with all manner of tasty shots, and around the midway point of the third a cracking combo, finished off with a right to the jaw see Komjathi’s legs go to jelly, whilst he didn’t actually go down his gloves touched the canvas and earned him a standing count.
Surprisingly Skeete didn’t go in hard and fast to finish the Hungarian off, but seemed content to showcase his skills for the adoring fans.
Komjathi was back on the front foot for the next couple of rounds, however Skeete remained unfazed and seemed content to just parry and counter his ever forward coming opponent to easily secure the rounds.
Skeete went back on the offensive in the penultimate and final rounds, easily forcing his durable opponent onto the backfoot for large parts of each stanza. Skeete also seemed to be putting more power behind his punches, shaking his opponent on numerous occasions, as he cruised his way to a tidy 80-71 points victory.
Prior to Skeete-Komjathi, Kevin Mitchell’s big hitting TRAD TKO Gym mate Frankie Buglioni took on super tough Ryan Clark, from Lincolnshire.
Big ticket seller Buglioni entered the arena to a standing ovation from the massive crowd, who continued their chanting throughout the bout as the Enfield man started fast, looking for his third early stoppage finish in three outings.
Clark, normally a crowd pleasing battler himself, was taken aback by the constant wave after wave of heavy double handed attacks and instead of going toe to toe with the man that has stopped both previous opponents, Sabie Montieth and Paul Morby, inside the first round, went defensive and covered up for long periods of the early rounds.
Unpreturbed Buglioni just kept attacking at pace to totally dominate the first couple of rounds.
More of the same in the first half third. However, after made a trip to the canvas, deemed a slip, it was Buglioni who had his resolve tested for the first time since turning pro back in November last year. As Buglioni went on the attack yet again, Clark countered with cracking right hook. Clark went on the offensive following up with a succession of big overhand rights and lefts to the body.
Normal service resumed in the fourth and final round, with Buglioni comfortably back in the driving seat, keeping up the pressure on Clark until the final bell.
No surprise when referee Bob Williams raised Buglioni’s arm in victory, declaring him the winner by 40-36 points margin.
Former Amateur star Bradley Saunders made an impressive start to his professional career, by stopping Jason Nesbitt in the third round of their scheduled six rounder.
Right from the off Saunders showed his class, bombarding the body of the highly durable Birmingham journeyman. In the second Saunders mixed it up a bit, throwing slick uppercuts, seriously stiff jabs and soul destroying right crosses to the head.
Saunders reverted to the body in the third and it came as no surprise to anyone when Nesbitt appeared hurt, by a vicious shot to the solar plexus. In an instant Saunders moved in for the kill, the first shot misses and as he is just about to let rip with another big body shot referee Bob Williams steps in to stop the bout on the two minutes and fifty seven second mark.
Undefeated in five Billy Morgan, another of Kevin Mitchell’s TRAD TKO Gym mates, took on Gants Hill’s Dan Naylor in a six rounder.
Round one to five were Morgan all the way, throughout the rounds the Canning Town youngster produced yet another masterclass, thoroughly out boxing the game Naylor and showcasing his fully loaded arsenal of punches.
Naylor stepped up the pace in the final round, to gain some limited success, but not enough to deprive Morgan of a clear 60-55 points victory.
Prio to Morgan-Naylor yet another TRAD TKO Gym boxer, Gary Corcoran, made his second pro outing, against Tamworth’s Matt Seagrave.
Right from the off Corcoran dominated the proceedings, his slick, yet powerful boxing style was way too much for 57 fight veteran Seagrave, who had to resort to covering up for much of the fight as Corcoran fired salvo after salvo to his body and head.
It came as no surprise when referee Bob Williams called a halt to the proceedings in the third after a particularly vicious flurry of shots had clearly hurt the Tamworth man.
The opening fight of the night see yet another TRAD TKO based fighter Ediz ‘Eddy’ Hussein made his second pro outing, against Barking’s Marc Callaghan.
Ediz, who is trained by his father – former Commonwealth Light Welterweight Champion Mo Hussein, showed all the class of his illustrious father, easily controlling the bout form start to finish to earn a tidy 39-37 points victory.
Kevin Mitchell Interview – Talks Murray, Lora, Burns and Rios
Photos and Interview Gianluca (Rio) Di Caro
This coming Friday WBO Inter-Continental Lightweight Champion Kevin Mitchell is set to face Spain based Felix Lora in a non-championship bout at the famous York Hall in Bethnal Green, London.
27 year old Mitchell returns to the ring for the first time since stopping John Murray in July last year at the Echo Arena in Liverpool and this fight is said to be a warm up ahead of a challenge for Ricky Burns’ new acquired WBO World Lightweight crown.
With such an important bout waiting in the wings ‘Mighty’ Mitchell will surely be looking to impress in front his home crowd, in similar style to his utter destruction of arch rival John Murray last year.
Earlier today I caught up with Kevin at the pre-fight media workout at his home gym – the TRAD TKO Boxing Gym in Canning Town, London – to talk about the John Murray fight as well as the upcoming fight against Felix Lora and more.
But first, for those that have forgotten the Fight of the Year winning showdown at the Echo Arena in Liverpool back in July, when young guns Kevin Mitchell and John Murray had a true Western style shoot out, here is quick recap.
From the moment Dagenham gunslinger Mitchell confidently moseyed his way into the arena to the chants and jeers of Manchester’s top gun Murray’s fans it was clear that this was a very different ‘Mighty’ from the one that was gunned down big time by Aussie shootist Michael Katsidis last year.
Mitchell’s resolve and intent was obvious to all, no more was he willing to play second fiddle to Murray. Right from the off he dug into his fully loaded arsenal to let rip with a pin point accurate double handed flurry. Murray shrugged of the initial assault and walk the Londoner back onto the ropes before launching an equally vicious attack of his own.
Dipping and swaying Mitchell avoided virtually everything Murray threw at him before slickly stepping aside and letting rip with a series of punishing hooks to the body. The resilient Mancunian responded as only he can, standing his ground, absorbing each rib cracking shot and timing his counters to perfection, but Mitchell was more than just ‘Mighty’ he was already beginning to look magnificent as he secured the first round.
The second was another cracking round. Mitchell seemingly using his superior body work to slow the ever forward moving Murray, that is until about midway through when Murray lands one of his massive rights. Mitchell reels back to the ropes and yet another Murray double handed salvo rains down on the Londoner. A close round but Murray just about nicks this one in my book.
Right from the opening bell of the third Murray starts hunting down his quarry. Mitchell attempts to keep him at bay with crisp jabs but it just slows the raging bull down for a second or so. Mitchell dips back into his arsenal and pulled out a couple big powerful rights, only for Murray to respond with a double handed assault of his own. Moments later Mitchell turns the table and backs Murray onto the ropes and lets rip with a massive double handed salvo that sees out the round. It was another seriously closely fought round, but I felt Murray had just done enough to make it his own.
The fourth sees a good old fashioned toe-to-toe slug fest open up the proceedings. Murray launched big Bertha round, whilst Mitchell mixed it up and firing off a series of rocket powered uppercuts and hooks, to both body and head. In the dying seconds of the round Murray backed up the Londoner to the ropes again, Mitchell avoided everything Murray threw at him before sidestepping and turning the tables, backing Murray to the ropes, and launching a big double handed salvo until the final bell. No doubt in my mind the was ‘Mighty’ Mitchell’s round one hundred percent.
Murray walks down Mitchell in the fifth, but this time instead of dipping and swaying his way out of trouble the Londoner responds with a series of three punch combination of uppercuts and hooks to the body which appear to have a major effect on Murray. Mitchell is quick to notice this and turns the heat up letting rip with wicked body shots, uppercuts and double handed salvos to the head which start to slow the ever advancing Murray. An easy round to call in Kevin’s favour, but don’t go thinking it was one way traffic, it wasn’t.
The effects, to Murray’s face, of the previous round were clear to everyone as he came out for the sixth, there were noticeable dark swellings under both eyes. Mitchell was quick to notice these and set his sights and let off a series of exocets to the head each time Murray came within range. A real ding dong battle ensued, Mitchell letting rip with hooks and big right hands whilst Murray responds with megaton bombs and short sharp rights to the side of Mitchell’s head. What a round it was pugilistic heaven and far too close to call.
Round seven sees Murray charge like a raging bull closing down MItchell before launching a series of seriously hard jabs and big rights, Mitchell responds with yet more double handed exocets to the head. By mid round Murray’s face is looking like a train wreck. In the dying seconds it looked like Murray was heading to Boot Hill, Mitchell lands a massive nuke that sends Murray reeling and rocking, but before ‘Mighty’ Mitch zoned in for the kill the bell tolled. Sure I don’t have to say this was Mitchell’s round.
Again Murray charges forward from the opening bell, but the moment he came into range Mitchell launched yet another exocet before moving in to let rip with a massive uppercut followed by big double rights, Murray responds in similar vein and an all out war ensues, which abruptly ends with a massive left hook that sends Murray face down to the canvas. Murray makes the count but Mitchell is on him in a flash and lets rip with another wicked combination that rocks Murray to the core and left the referee no option but to stop the fight after just one minute and forty six seconds of the round.
So there you go, that’ll give you an idea of what to expect from our Kev on the 10th February, now let’s hear what the man himself has to say.
Rio – Kevin, first things first. Congratulations, your magnificent battle with John Murray was named 2011 Fight of the Year by Boxing News and BoxRec, how do you feel about that?
Kevin – Thanks to the readers of Boxing News and BoxRec who voted for the fight. I’m so pleased that everyone enjoyed the fight, it’s always an honour to be recognised for achieving something.
It was good to give my fans something to cheer for after the Katsidis fight.
Rio – The media as a whole showered accolades on you for your magnificent performance on the night, but how did you see the fight?
Kevin – I see it as a 50/50 fight.
After the beating by Michael Katsidis I wanted to put the record right – I watched that fight again last night, Katsidis did his job, I weren’t right and I got beat.
Everyone was saying Kevin’s finished, he got done in two rounds. Which wasn’t a bad thing as it made me push harder. As of 2012 I’m going to push even harder as I want a World title.
Yeah, it was a terrific fight, but I always knew deep down that I’d beat him, I knew I’d be too much for him, too much difference, I can change things, I can fight, I can box, I can punch hard.
Rio – OK, back to this Friday’s fight, even though it’s a non-championship bout I know just how seriously you have been taking your training, you were even in the gym over Christmas and New Year – So just how do you feel training has gone.
Kevin – It’s been going well, I’m bang on target for the fight this Friday.
I feel fit, did most of my sparring with Colin Lynes after some earlier rounds with Gary Corcoran, got my fitness up and then sparred with Colin and an Italian guy here called Freddie (Federico Tavares) helped me out.
Thanks to them, and of course Jimmy and Mark (Tibbs), I’m spot on for Friday.
Rio – Do you know much about your opponent Felix Lora?
Kevin – He’s gonna be a tough guy for ten rounds, I know I’m able to put him away if I want to, but I’m not going in there and try and blast him out, I’m gonna go out there and get some rounds in, if I nail him I nail him but if I don’t it’ll be good to get the rounds in.
Rio – I know you never look past any opponent, but as the word is that after this there’ll be a Summer showdown with Ricky Burns for his World title – What’s your thoughts on this?
Kevin – I’ll beat Burns and then I’ll knock Brandon Rios out.
Rio – Rios has said that he’s moving up to Light Welter – are you that determined to fight him that you’ll move to Light Welter to fight him?
Kevin – Yeah, I’ll move up if I have to, I want to fight him.
There’s a lot of needle there, he’s got a big mouth, he thinks he’s a powerful man.
I don’t care if he goes up a weight . I’ll win the title at Lightweight, defend it a few times and then I’ll go up to Light Welter and beat him up.
Rio – Sure is some needle there – OK, finally is there anything you would like to say to your fans?
Kevin – Thanks to all the fans that are going to turn up at York Hall on Friday, I promise you all a cracking fight.
Kevin Mitchell versus Felix Lora headlines the sold out Frank Warren Promotions event at York Hall, Bethnal Green, London, on Friday 10th February 2012 and broadcast live on BoxNation (Sky platform Channel 456 & Virgin 546).
TRAD TKO BOXING GYM
‘MIGHTY’ KEVIN MITCHELL
WBO Inter-Continental Lightweight Champion
London – Thursday, 1st September 2011
Kevin Mitchell Meet And Greet At The Boxers Bar, London E2 This Saturday
IBO Lightweight Inter-Continental Champion Kevin Mitchell will be making a personal appearance at David and Stephen Smith’s ‘THE BOXERS BAR’ in Christopher Street, London EC2, from 7pm this Saturday night.
Kevin, who won the coveted title with a scintillating performance over
John Murray at the Echo Arena in Liverpool on the 16th July, will be
joined by various well known boxers from his ‘home’ gym – The TRAD TKO Boxing Gym in Canning Town.
Speaking earlier today Kevin said, “As you know I do love a bar, it’s a
boxing bar so that’s even better
Stephen and David support boxing and even better they came to Canvey to
support the Indee Rose Trust, so now we’re going to go down to their bar
on Saturday to show our support for them.”
Kevin Mitchell will be at THE BOXERS BAR in Christopher Street, London
EC2A 2BS from 7pm on Saturday 3rd September 2011
Bar owners David and Stephen Smith With Kevin Mitchell At The TRAD
TKO Celebrity Football Tournament
Gianluca (Rio) Di Caro
JustListen2This Publicity & Promotion
London, UK, Gzira, Malta & Philadelphia, USA
Boxing Results – Saturday 16 July – Echo Arena, Liverpool, Merseyside, United Kingdom
- Lightweight – John Murray 31(18)-0(0)-0 Lost to Kevin Mitchell 31(23)-1(1)-0 –TKO 8 / 12 – Time: 1:36 – Vacant WBO Inter-Continental lightweight title
- Super featherweight – Ricky Burns def Nicky Cook by TKO 1 / 12 – Time: 1:33 – WBO super featherweight title
- Light heavyweight – Tony Bellew def Ovill McKenzie on UD 12 / 12 – Commonwealth (British Empire) light heavyweight title – Vacant BBBofC British light heavyweight title
- Welterweight – Frankie Gavin def Curtis Woodhouse on SD 12 / 12 – WBO Inter-Continental welterweight title
John Murray vs Kevin Mitchell
In a crowd pleasing battle former world title challenger Kevin Mitchell (32-1, 24 KOs) stopped the unbeaten reign of John Murray (31-1, 18 KOs), flooring Murray in the eighth round. Murray beat the count but Mitchell went back in and hammered away until the bout was stopped at 1.46.
Throughout out the bout, Mitchell (32-1, 24 KO) utilized a great left uppercut against the effective pressure applied by Murray. Till the sixth round it looked pretty even, although Murray’s eyes were swelling heavily and were probably impairing his vision. Then late in the seventh round, Mitchell hurt Murray badly, and Murray was saved by the bell.
With both eyes swollen and cut, Murray banged his gloves together and charged into Mitchell to start the eighth round, in an effort to get back into the game. Instead, he walked into some great shots from Mitchell, who floored Murray and then moments later finished him off after the referee gave Murray a final shot to come back into the fight.
This was a great comeback for Mitchell who has not fought in 14 months since his first pro loss to Michael Katsidis.
Ricky Burns vs Nicky Cook
WBO super featherweight champion Ricky Burns (32-2, 9 KOs) scored a first round TKO over former champ Nicky Cook (30-3, 16 KOs). Really a non-fight as Cook was down multiple times and apparently entered the ring with a back injury and was unfit to fight. Cook was taken from the ring on a stretcher. Time was 1:33. Rumors of match fixing were rife and bets were suspended in the UK on the fight. Cook was obviously not in a condition to get into the ring and one wonders how he got through his medical. A British Boxing Board of Control representative was on Sky Sports just after the fight, saying that it’s “too early” to say there will be any inquiry into the fight.
Tony Bellew vs Ovill McKenzie
Tony Bellew came into today’s rematch with Ovill McKenzie as the Commonwealth light heavyweight champion, and left with that belt and the British title, but overall he disappointed with a lackluster performance in a fight that the Liverpool crowd found boring.
Frankie Gavin vs Curtis Woodhouse
Gavin had a slow start and barely got past Curtis Woodhouse in a welterweight 12-round, marking the prospect’s second straight shaky performance. Scores were 117-112 and 116-113 for Gavin and 115-114 for Woodhouse. Gavin is now 11-0 (8 KO), but his stock as a prospect is dropping like a rock right now. Woodhouse falls to 15-3 (10 KO).