After their dominant display away to the USA Knockouts in their World Series of Boxing (WSB) debut, the British Lionhearts will be taking to the canvas for the first time on their home turf with the visit of the competition titleholders Dolce & Gabbana Italia Thunder on Friday 23 November (20:00 local time). The world famous 2010 golf Ryder Cup venue Celtic Manor will have the pleasure of seeing two Olympic silver medallists and two European Champions in action for the home team. Welsh pair Fred Evans and Andrew Selby will be the star attractions whilst Ireland’s John Joe Nevin and Joe Ward will make it a real stellar evening.
Top Heavyweight (91+kg) Joseph Joyce will get the show undereway when he faces Italian pro fighter Matteo Modugno (unbeaten in 12 fights with 6 KOs to his name). The tall 27-year-old orthodox Joyce, who won the recent Tammer Tournament in Finland, knows he can mix it up with the best.
AIBA World Boxing Championships Baku 2011 silver medallist and reigning European Champion Andrew Selby will then battle Daniele Limone, who was recruited by the Italian Franchise from the pro ranks where he had a 10 win to one loss record. This Bantamweight (50-54kg) showdown promises to be of the highest order with the lightening quick hands and constant switching of stance of the electric Selby against the experienced head of the Thunder’s 28-year-old.
Selby was really confident ahead of the fight, declaring, “With the GB squad, we are always well prepared and ready for anything. It will not be any different with WSB. We are as fit and strong as anyone, and the extra couple of kilos will suit me well as I am coming up from Flyweight (52kg). Italy has always got a strong team but we are not afraid of anyone. I am looking forward to the bout, and will put on a show in front of the home crowd”.
The British Franchise’s burgeoning Irish talent Joe Ward, the current European Champion, will be pitted against experienced campaigner Imre Szello of Hungary at Light Heavyweight (80-85kg). Two tactically proficient boxers going head-to-head will ensure real fireworks for the fans.
The technically gifted Irishman John Joe Nevin, a silver medallist at the London 2012 Olympic Games, made the switch over the summer from Paris United where he was part of the team that crowned WSB Team Champions in 2011. The classy operator will now be representing the British Lionhearts at Lightweight (57-61kg) and will be locking horns with 21-year-old Branimir Stankovic, the Serbian who really came of age last season. This one promises to be absolute dynamite.
Fresh from his exploits in London, 2012 Olympic Games silver medallist Fred Evans will send the crowds into raptures will his all-action style when he steps through the ropes to face Italy’s tough Frenchman Michel Tavares in the night’s Middleweight (68-73kg) bout. It will be an extremely tough competition bow for the 21-year-old Welshman in the battle of the southpaws, with Tavares a veteran of two seasons in WSB with an impressive record of 9 wins to two losses.
On facing Tavares, Evans said, “I am feeling well prepared. I am not bothered with whom I face, I will box anyone, anywhere. It is just great to be back boxing in front of my home crowd in Wales, for the first time since I won my Olympic medal. It will be great to box in WSB and I cannot wait to get going and get my first win for the Lionhearts”.
A legendary venue with some of the very best boxers on the planet taking to the ring will give WSB fans one spectacular show. It will be a classic.