Conor Benn defends his WBA Continental Welterweight Title as Matchroom’s Boxing returns to York Hall on Friday Night in their latest JD NXTGEN show.
Coming up against the experienced Jussi Koivula, Benn will be defending the first title of his career since defeating former foe Cedrick Penaud last Summer.
After sustaining an injury towards the end of 2018, Benn returned to the ring on the undercard of David Allen vs Lucas Browne in April in an eight rounder against Czech Josef Zahradnik, winning via a wide points decision.
However, a wide points decision against Koivula isn’t as likely in Benn’s second ten rounder of his career. Born and currently residing in Finland, Koivula may not have long left in his professional career at the age of 35 as well as almost 11 years since his debut.
Having challenged for the European title 3 times, Koivula is no stranger to title action despite never having been on the winning end of a bout involving a championship.
Losing his last fight in a close points decision to the undefeated Jordy Weiss for the European Welterweight title, Koivula has been on the wrong end of a tight call for the judges more than once, missing out via split decision against former Amir Khan opponent Samuel Vargas.
Going back to experience, Koivula has boxed a total of 195 rounds – nearly 4 times the amount that Benn has (51). As well as fighting someone who has championship experience, Benn will also have to overcome somebody who has major fighting experience having mostly fought inexperience fighters such as himself so far in his pro career.
Craig ‘Spider’ Richards & Andre Sterling Face off in British Title Eliminator
In a match-up that appears to have bad blood, Light-Heavyweights Craig Richards & Andre Sterling go up against each other in a battle of South London.
Both former Southern Area champs, Sterling defeated Kirk Garvey a few months ago in a close points decision, defeating former British Title challenger Ricky Summers immediately afterwards.
Richards on the other hand won the Southern Area title at Super-Middleweight, defeating Alan Higgins over points.
In what is being seen by some as a 50/50 fight, the winner is likely to face Joshua Buatsi for the British title this year whereas the loser may have to revisit Southern Area level.
Ted Cheeseman Returns from Sergio Garcia Defeat, fights Kieron Conway
Returning 4 and a half months after suffering his first professional career defeat, Ted Cheeseman defends his British title against the fairly unknown Kieran Conway.
In a fight where he was out-boxed & out-fought, Cheeseman drops back down to British title level to face Conway who only has one mark on his record, an Ultimate Boxxer loss to tournament winner Derrick Osaze.
Cheeseman who perhaps would be taking a softer touch if he didn’t have a British title to defend, who has fought 13 times in his pro career in just over 2 years.
The winner of this fight is expected to face Scott Fitzgerald later this year.