After seven long months, the World Series of Boxing (WSB) returns on Thursday, 15th January, and the first match of Season V is a mouthwatering battle between two Franchises returning to the competition.
London’s York Hall is one of the most iconic boxing venues in the world, and its humble location in East London is the home-base for British Lionhearts who compete in Season V after missing last season.
Their opponents are China Dragons, who are back aiming to replicate the success of the Beijing Dragons Franchise which competed in the first two WSB seasons.
Boxing fans in Britain can view the event live at 8.00pm GMT on the BT Sport 2 television channel, while the rest of the world can watch free, live and on demand at AIBABoxingTV.com.
Kicking off the action at Light flyweight (49 kg) is an intriguing contest between Commonwealth Games bronze medalist and British Lionhearts representative Ashley Williams and 2014 China Open Tournament silver medalist He Junjun.
The Light flyweights are the quickest boxers in WSB, and this opening clash will be exciting from beginning to end.
Eight medalists from the 2014 Commonwealth Games are in the British squad, including Bantamweight (56 kg) Qais Ashfaq who won a silver medal in the competition, and he squares off against China’s Diao Jianhao in match two.
In the third fight of the evening, Sam Maxwell is in action, and the Light welterweight (64 kg) has valuable WSB experience having competed for the Lionhearts in Season III.
His opponent is China’s Sairike Tuoliaowutayi who won the Chinese Youth National Championships in 2011.
Anthony Fowler has emerged as one of the best Middleweights (75 kg) in the world over the past two years, and the Commonwealth Games gold medalist and the AIBA World Championships bronze medalist won his lone WSB match in Season III by stoppage.
China’s Zhou Di will be in the opposite corner, and Di made the quarter-finals of the 2014 Asian Games.
The regulations of WSB state that all teams must select at least one overseas boxer for every match, so therefore the Heavyweight (91 kg) match which closes the evening is a match between Romania’s Ionut-Mirel Jitaru representing the Lionhearts, and Croatia’s Mediterranean Games silver medallist Josip Bepo Filipi who is an honorary Dragon for China.
Heavyweight boxing in WSB has to be seen to be believed, as the heavy-hitters always look for the knockout, and this fight has the capabilities to be the most entertaining scrap on a night of pure quality.