Despite sharing the card with current and former world champions this weekend, the clash between Felix Cash (11-0 7KO) and Jack Cullen (17-1 8KO) for the Commonwealth middleweight title, is arguably the most intriguing domestic fight this weekend. Both fighters are still looking for their ‘breakout’ fight and this could well be the perfect opportunity for the winner to announce themselves on the domestic scene.
Cash, 26, was a standout amateur for Team GB and only missed out on the 2016 Olympic games due to being behind Anthony Fowler in the pecking order, which lead to him turning professional in 2016. Despite debuting on the undercard of Anthony Joshua’s world title fight with Dominic Breazeale, it hasn’t been plain sailing for Felix Cash as a professional. Periods of inactivity have halted his progress and despite winning the Commonwealth title in his previous outing, he finds himself in a must win fight this weekend, especially if he wants to reach the sort of heights that his talent has always promised.
Jack Cullen, 25, also turned professional in 2016. However, his journey to this point has been quite contrasting to that of Felix Cash. Starting out on local ‘small hall shows’, Cullen has done things the hard way and had to take a setback early in his career when he faced defeat, albeit in a three-round tournament in Ireland. Despite turning over at the same time, Cullen has amassed six more fights than Cash and the momentum is definitely in his favour.
A win here on Saturday evening could round off a very productive 2019 for the man from Little Lever, in Bolton. After winning the English middleweight title in May, he quickly defended it against the tough John Harding Jr in August, winning via KO in the eighth round, a fight that was live on Sky Sports and represents his best and most high-profile win of his career to date. Backed by what seems like the entire population of Little Lever, Cullen has an energetic and loyal following and they will be looking to make themselves heard inside Manchester Arena on Saturday and hoping their man can perform on the big stage.
Based on what we have seen so far, it would be a fair assessment to say that although Cash was the superior amateur, he hasn’t had quite the same effect as a professional. Injuries and inactivity have played a part but the whole sport moving so fast, he needs a big performance to get his name back in the middleweight mix.
For Cullen, it seems like the perfect fight at the perfect time. He is seemingly in the form of his career and getting better with each fight. The pressure is on Cash to defend his title and the role as the underdog, may be something that suits the Lancashire man.
All things considered; this feels like a really important night for both men. The winner moves on and becomes a real player in the domestic middleweight picture and for the loser, it’s a long way back. The fight has all the ingredients to steal the show and with Cullen bringing the population of a small Lancashire town into the Manchester Arena, the atmosphere should be red hot for this one and it could be the fight of the night.