Steve Wraith takes his promotional bandwagon to Hardwick Hall in Sedgefield next month with the hotly-anticipated, Winner Takes It All showpiece which will be headlined by a thunderous grudge-match between two former stablemates for the Northern Area title.
Champion Daniel Cope will put his Area title on the line against Billy Snaith. Cope who left Gus Robinson gym to join Neil Fannan stable won the title last year against Gatesheads Tom Whitfield. Snaith now trains at Jeff Saunders gym in Sedgefield but is managed by promoter Wraith.
Since the fight was agreed a few weeks ago both fighters have been in action with Cope grabbing a draw at Rainton Meadows and Snaith winning an International Challenge belt in Newcastle. But both fighters clearly had only one thing on their minds with daggers already being drawn.
Cope said: “I really don’t know where he’s got all this confidence from.
“I always beasted him in sparring but he says he wants to fight me so let’s do it, that’s if he makes weight.
“I saw him on Saturday and he was really overweight so I hope he can make it so I can finish this this off and give him a good hiding.”
Challenger Snaith responded: “ I watched his last fight at Rainton Meadows and I will not be having any sleepless nights.
“He was sloppy and unconditioned and didn’t seem interested. Northern Area Champion? Don’t make me laugh.
“He got lucky against Tom Whitfield and isn’t the strongest of lads and come fight night it’s only me and him in the ring. I’m not getting beat off him and if I did then I’d retire.
“I’m knocking him out make no mistake about it. He doesn’t take the body shot and I can’t see him doing anything to me unless I fall and break my leg and even then I’d still beat him.”
The undercard, which is already starting to take shape, will see Jeff Saunders, undefeated in ten outings, step up to eight rounds, and there will be outings for the other Wraith-managed fighters Neil Hepper and Carl Wilson, along with Phil Jeffries protege Adam Watson and the exciting Jordan King will also feature with more names to be confirmed over the next few weeks.
Tickets for the show at Hardwick Hall on April 22 are on sale now priced at £35 from www.
This weekend sees Lewis Pendleton and Steve Wraith combine to bring Fortitude to the Geordie Nation at the Walker Activity Dome.
Headlined by Wraith-managed Billy Snaith in an international challenge belt fight with Czech Republic fighter, Michal Vosyka, as Snaith prepares to oppose former stablemate and divisional rival, Daniel Cope, next month for the Northern Area title.
For promoters Pendleton and Wraith it is an opportunity to give fighters some much needed ring time ahead of what could potentially be a big, title winning year for a number of them.
Pendleton said: “Fighting Chance are delighted to be returning to Newcastle for our joint promotion with Steve Wraith.
“This show is about building opportunities for north east fighters and by working together we can bring plenty of derbies together in the future ensuring that regional fight fans have shows to remember.
“Although we are delighted that we have four of our own fighters on the bill (Kyle Redfearn, Jamie Humble and debutants Darren Reay and Krisy Pilkington all make an appearance) we are also disappointed for Tom (Whitfield) and his team.
This injury will prevent him being on this show but we are looking forward to adding him to an already packed bill in May where we’ll be looking at another title opportunity for him.”
With headline star-in-the-making, undefeated Jeff Saunders, and stablemate Billy Snaith, both topping the bill, promoter-manager Steve Wraith is happy to get two of his stable out early this year as both they, and Neil Hepper, will be looking to bring home the gold over the next twelve months, Carl Wilson not far behind them.
Wraith added: “The division which Billy and Tom are in has great potential to run and run with some fantastic local talent around.
“Unfortunately for Tom he’s picked up an injury and as he knows all too well, this is what happens in boxing, but we wish him well and all the best for his recovery and I’m sure we can match it again later this year.
“For Billy we’ve managed to get him an international challenge title fight (against Vosyka) which is something we had to get as a warm-up for him facing (Dan) Cope at Hardwick next month for the Area title.
“I for one am pleased that we can still put the show on as I need to get both Billy, and Jeff, out ahead of what is looking like a big year for my lads.”
The show, Fortitude, promoted by Lewis Pendleton and Steve Wraith, takes place at the Walker Activity Dome this Saturday night with doors opening at 630pm and first fight scheduled for 730pm; tickets still available from all fighters on the card.
Tyneside promoters, Steve Wraith (Pro Boxing Newcastle Gateshead) and Lewis Pendleton (Fighting Chance Promotions) are joining forces this March to bring the regions fight fans, ‘Fortitude’ at the Walker Dome, Newcastle.
The show, which features two title fights involving Tom Whitfield, 4-1 against Billy Snaith, 3-0 (British Challenge at super welterweight) and Basi Razaq, 6-1-1(3) opposing Dwayne Sheldon, 2-4(1) (British Challenge at welterweight).
Snaith joins his new stablemates Jeff Saunders, 9-0(5), Carl Wilson, 4-5-1(3), and Neil Hepper, 8-4 on an exciting, stacked bill after he recently joined the Wraith bandwagon along with Fighting Chance prospects Kyle Redfearn, 1-0(1), Jamie Humble, 2-0(1) and Jone TK Volau, 4-1(1) among numerous others.
Speaking of his fighters on the upcoming show manager-promoter Steve Wraith said: “Hepper continues to be much sought after but we are looking after his interests and looking to build his record before looking at the bigger picture.
“Snaith is head strong and determined to achieve all that he can in a short space of time. He approached me asking if I would be willing to help him achieve his ambitions and there was no hesitation.
“He comes from one of the best gyms in the north-east (Cope’s) and is now at another with Jeff Saunders, Mark McGuiness and Ian Glass looking after him; I feel that he has some exciting nights ahead.
In Lewis Pendleton, north-east boxing’s new kid on the block who’s full of progressive ideas, the show marks the start of a new year in which he, his staff and fighters can continue to flourish in the spotlight.
He added: “Fighting Chance are proud to be returning to Tyneside for this our first show of 2017, we are pleased to be working with Steve again as he adds some exciting additions from his stable to the show.
“Headlining will see Tom Whitfield against Billy Snaith in a super welterweight contest and Basi Razaq versus Dwayne Sheldon at welterweight.
“I am particularly excited to see Kyle Redfearn take on Krzysztof Golec who caused a major upset in his last outing in Newcastle beating Sam Best whilst Jamie Humble will continue his apprenticeship as he looks to make rapid progress towards titles this year and TK will be looking to make a statement and get back to winning ways as he looks for a title opportunity in 2017.
“We’ve also made offers to several fighters and their managers for Lee Mould and are hoping that we can get him a title opportunity on this bill, if not he will certainly be boxing for a title headlining our next show in May.”
Tickets for ‘Fortitude,’ on March 11 at the Walker Dome, will be available soon from the fighters, online, and from the venue priced at £35 (standard), £50 (VIP Ringside) and £75 (VVIP front row ringside & corporate lounge).
Announcements regarding press conferences will be made online soon.
Undefeated in his three professional outings to date, Ferryhill super welterweight, Billy Snaith, has parted company with Hartlepool’s Peter Cope and Alan Temple to sign managerial terms with Tyneside promoter, Steve Wraith.
The move means that, in leaving Hartlepool, he will now be trained in Fishburn under the tutelage of Jeff Saunders Snr and alongside Wraith’s other managed fighters in Jeff Saunders, Carl Wilson and Neil Hepper.
Snaith, who’ll make his bow under new management on March 11 at the Walker Dome, said: “I’m excited for what is a new challenge, a new chapter in my career.
“Cope and Temple have done a lot for me in my early career as a professional and I thank them for that, they gave me a chance and it’s much appreciated.
“I felt the time was right to move on and I know Steve is a good person and will certainly get me what I want in the fight game. I can already see improvements in my fitness being at South Durham and that’s brilliant.
“I’ve known Jeff Snr since the amateurs and, with this being closer to home, it certainly makes things easier for me, there’s also some fantastic sparring in here for me as well what with Jeff (Saunders), Carl (Wilson), Neil (Hepper), and Adam Watson pops in, then you’ve got the amateurs here who’re a tough set of lads.”
Both Steve and Billy know that this, first year together, is crucial, and the fighter is certainly already chasing the big fights with regional prospects, Tom Whitfield, and former stablemate Daniel Cope, in his sights.
For the Tyneside promoter the opportunity to sign up Snaith was too good to pass up and knows that he is moving from one top class gym (Gus Robinson’s) to another (South Durham).
“I am delighted to welcome Billy to our team,” added Steve Wraith.
“He is head strong and determined to achieve all that he can in a short space of time. He approached me asking if I would be willing to help him achieve his ambitions and there was no hesitation.
“He comes from one of the best gyms in the north-east (Cope’s) and is now at another with Jeff Saunders, Mark McGuiness and Ian Glass looking after him; I feel that he has some exciting nights ahead.”
Exciting nights is certainly what Snaith and the rest of the Wraith camp are looking at this year and the super welterweight finished saying: “I’m looking to keep myself busy this year and I want to fight both (Tom) Whitfield and (Daniel) Cope.
“The three of us know that we can beat each other on any given day and that’s what makes for better fights between us.”
Billy Snaith is scheduled to make his first appearance under Steve Wraith on the Pendleton-Wraith co-promotion at the Walker Dome on March 11 alongside his stablemates.
Tune in for live updates from St James Park as professional boxing returns to its rightful home, at the heart of Newcastle.
Steve Wraith of Pro Boxing Newcastle Gateshead, and Pat Barrett of Black Flash Promotions, brings you seven top quality fights on a bill co-headlined by the undefeated duo of Jeff Saunders and Sam Best.
Scott Quigg and the Black Flash team are ringside along with local celebs Brad Saunders, Troy Williamson, Mal Gates, Paul Charters and Imran Naeem.
Full house at the Park as Barnes opens up against Curtis Gargano over four threes.
Gargano giving Barnes another to work for with some big shots, Barnes replying well and working his way through the fight. Barnes closing second with some heavy body shots onto Gargano.
Gargano comes out the stronger in the third as Barnes is made to work continuously. Barnes pushes away a constant onslaught as Gargano goads fans celebrating at end of third – too soon, who knows?
Fourth round sees both fighters come out blazing, throwing heavy shots, Barnes looking to work the win. Gargano continues to throw haymakers in a fight of non-stop action as the bout goes the distance.
Referee scores contest 40-37 in favour of Barnes.
(Watson lands one of many on Vosyka)
The second bout sees Spennymoor’s Adam Watson oppose Michal Vosyka over four threes, the Whirlwind having won his debut last time out via stoppage.
Watson has the early upper hand, pinning his opponent in the corner or on ropes at every chance. He’s certainly showing why he’s nicknamed The Whirlwind with composed, fast shots which doesn’t give opponent chance to recover.
As a Sunderland fan in the heart of the enemy’s ground Watson will be loving this performance.
In the third and Watson is relentless in his punishment, only a matter of time as he prowls like a caged tiger, Vosyka offering little in return to the disappointment of the home fighter.
Voskya survives the four rounds to go to judges cards.
Referee scores contest 40-36 to Watson.
Darlington’s own, Carl Wilson, returns against Jindrich Veleky, a good test after a spell out.
Wilson eases through the first round showing good composure and little rust. The second round sees him feels out his opponent, keeping him on the back foot.
An onslaught in the second though means an impressive stoppage win on his comeback for Wilson after 2:56.
It’s Hepper time as Darlington favourite, Neil Hepper, returns to the ring after near two years out, he opposes Belfast fighter Alec Bazza.
Hepper eases through the opener with a nick caught in the opening exchanges, looking composed.
Second round sees pressure from Hepper to go through the bout comfortably.
Third round sees Hepper utilise his range as Bazza looks to take him the distance meaning some good rounds for the Darlo star.
Final round sees Hepper up the ante as he looks for a strong finish, getting the full four rounds under his belt on his return.
Referee scores contest 40-36 to Hepper.
Ferryhill fighter Billy Snaith takes to the ring as the show comes to main bouts taking on Rudolf Durica and with good support Snaith is looking to notch up another success.
Snaith looks composed in the opening exchanges, troubling his opponent well and often.
Movement and hand work coming across well as Snaith has firm control coming into the last round.
Hard working performance from Snaith as he’s made to put the rounds in against a tough opponent.
Referee scores the contest 40-36 to Snaith.
(Saunders rains the shots in on Gorman over four rounds)
Onto the first of two main events as Jeff Saunders takes to the ring.
Saunders opposes James Gorman looking the sharpest kid on the block.
Usual movement with rights and lefts lights up the first round for Saunders.
In the second and Saunders keeping Gorman at arms length, showing his prowess after looking like a caged tiger warming up before.
Barrage of left bodies rocks Gorman as Saunders controls the contest, using the body shots to his advantage.
Into the third and Saunders takes a few shots but continues to rain them in. Gorman happy to take the fight as long as possible.
Into the fourth round and Saunders resorts back to the jab as Saunders take the rounds for a points win.
Referee scores contest 40-36 Saunders.
The final bout of the afternoon sees home favourite, Sam Best, take to the ring against Tomislav Rudan.
Crowd gets behind their fighter as Best works through the opening rounds with style.
Rudan gives Best thought in the third but he rides any storm, keeping on the pressure in a good workout for the home fighter.
In the final round Best and Gorman trades punches as Best takes a few heavy shots.
As the round closes Best goes all out to try ensure success against a difficult opponent.
Referee score the final contest 40-36 to Best.
Join us at the after-party at the Grosvenor Casino, St James Boulevard straight after the show (remember photo ID and vehicle registration at reception).
With the ‘Showdown at St James’ around the corner here’s a schedule of the day for the event (please note times are approximate).
Doors Open 12 noon
Food (VIP) 12:15pm
First Fight 1:30pm
RUNNING ORDER (subject to change)
This Sunday, in the Bamburgh Suite at St James Park, the home of Newcastle United Football Club, is the first of three shows in three months for Tyneside Promoter-Manager, Steve Wraith.
This year, in terms of promotional push, it will have been the busiest for the man who put on his first show just over four years ago, at the O2 Academy.
Now, with the ‘Showdown at St James’ about to be played out to the masses featuring three of the PBNG stable in Jeff Saunders, Neil Hepper and Carl Wilson, Steve is already looking ahead, not to the net one, but the next two shows.
“For a promoter who is supposed to be having a bad year finishing off 2016 with three top shows in three months clearly shows you should never believe everything you read in the media,” began Steve.
“We have had a transitional year and have branched into new areas which is something nobody else in the North East pro scene has done on a regular basis.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing my 3 lads box on Sunday at St James Park and then helping them reach their goals in the next 12 months. ”
Following Sunday’s ‘Showdown at St James’ Steve goes back on the road with a trip back to Tolworth for the ‘No Tricks, Just Treats’ Tolworth III show at the Tolworth Recreation Centre on October 29 before a return for his fighters to Darlington’s citadel of boxing, The Dolphin Centre, on November 26.
All at Pro Boxing Newcastle Gateshead would like to thank our sponsors, Grosvenor Casino (the official after party venue) and Pavel’s Gents Hairdressers for their continued support.
Now the English Football League fixtures have been announced Tyneside promoter-manager Steve Wraith can officially announce the date of his ‘Showdown @ St James’ – September 25.
In taking professional boxing back the beating heart of Newcastle and the scene of many a glorious afternoon/evening at the St James Hall venue Steve will look to reignite the fire in the belly of boxing fans across the region.
Headlining at The Bamburgh Suite will be a Northern Area title clash, and rematch, between Tom Whitfield and Daniel Cope, the pair renewing rivalries after their non-stop tussle at Rainton Meadows last year.
The show will also see the long-awaited return of Darlington’s Neil Hepper who, after some 18+ months away from the sport, signed a managerial contract late last year and will be looking to show that the move was a decision worth making.
Hepper will be joined by another Darlington fighter making his comeback in Carl Wilson (pending board approval) who signed with Steve Wraith just last month with the pair training at the Saunders camp in Fishburn, County Durham.
(Above – Daniel Cope and Tom Whitfield will go again, this time for the Northern Area strap; Below – Neil Hepper makes his long awaited return)
Steve said: “The attraction of fighting at St James’ has meant that my phones have been very active the past few weeks with lads asking their managers to get them on it.
“I realise that this will be a bumped bill and with Premier League facilities available to the them it’s a show not to be missed. The fans and the fighters will have some good opportunities on the day and I’m hoping this will be the first of many.
“The only disappointment is that, after conversations with Mal Gates and Peter Cope Snr we’ve sadly had to postpone the proposed Northern Area title fight between Lee Mould and Anth Hardy.
“We understand that things happen and what seems a great idea at the start of the year may not be six months later.”
Before then Steve and PBNG take a breather from the regional scene and head to SW London on July 16 for ‘Genesis’ in association with Joey Pyle and John Edwards.
With less than three weeks to go until fight night at the Recreation Centre the card has been nicely stacked and ticket sales are going well with all looking forward to a great night of professional boxing, and hopefully some top quality action.
Tickets for ‘Showdown @ St James’ will be available from fighters, and the PBNG ticket-site in due course (standard available NOW)
Tyneside promoter-manager Steve Wraith added his fifth signing recently in the shape of returning Darlington fighter, Carl Wilson.
The fighter, who becomes Wraith’s third from Darlington, will trade at cruiserweight and returns after a brief spell on the sidelines due to work and family commitments.
Wilson debuted in 2010 and has had several outings in the region registering three wins and draw from his eight outings up to May 2014, drawing with Lithuanian heavyweight, Igoris Borucha at Darlington’s Dolphin Centre.
Prior to that Wilson challenged for a Masters title whilst with Paul Hamilton at the DBMA in Darlington. Although results haven’t always gone the way he would like, Wilson a father of three, is expected to make his comeback in September on the ‘Showdown at St James.’
He said: “It’s over two years now since I last fought but, for the majority of that period, I’ve been in Afghanistan.
“I enjoyed being in the sport over the four years I was, and I have missed it; however, I don’t want to leave it any longer and want to get back training and get back out there fighting again.
“I’ve seen what people like (Neil) Hepper have done and I feel that’s the way to go hence my looking at a fresh start.
“My first four fighters were decent but I gave away too much in weight, or fights were with too short notice. This time though I know things will be different and I’m looking forward to it.”
Although promoter Steve Wraith’s next outing is on South West London, at the Tolworth Recreation Centre, on July 16 he will be bringing professional boxing back to its spiritual home in September.
‘Showdown at St James. Features two Northern Area title fights as Anthony Hardy opposes Lee Mould, and fight fans finally get the chance to see Tom Whitfield against Daniel Cope – The Rematch (that’s if Dan hasn’t decided to continue his venture into video journalism as his recent interview of brother Peter alludes to).
Tickets for both the London, and Newcastle shows will be available from www.proboxingnewcastlegateshead.com with the Newcastle show to be announced officially once the Football League fixtures are announced, and television offerings are put forward.
Carl Wilson’s fight record can be found HERE