Boxing: Josh Kelly has big plans for future

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Josh Kelly is delighted to help big-time boxing return to the North East Area of New Castle and is looking to put on a show for the fans on June 16. Kelly, a Rio 2016 Olympian, will headline a show at the Metro Radio Arena on June 16 as he challenges Kris George for the welterweight Commonwealth title.

It is the Sunderland pugilist’s seventh professional fight, with his stick continuing to rise in world boxing thanks to his fan-friendly style.

Speaking at the press conference to officially announce the Matchroom Boxing show on Tyneside, Kelly said: “I can’t wait. It’s great to be back up here.

“Being from the North East you’re brought up fighting from day one. We don’t get as much opportunities in life up here, so it’s great to be part of bringing the boxing back.

“I can’t wait to step into that packed out arena and put on a show for the fans.”

Kelly’s is one of five title fights already announced for the bill, with Kelly sharing headline duties with Forest Hall’s Lewis Ritson who makes a third defence of his British lightweight belt. North East favourites Stuart Hall, Anthony Nelson and Simon Vallily will also feature, and Kelly is confident a big crowd will turn out to back all the local Boxers.

He added: “Lewis (Ritson) has been doing brilliant things lately too, and I know for a fact all the North East lads are going to give their all on this show, and we’ll have a great night of boxing in Newcastle.

“We can talk about the North East and the rivalries between Sunderland and Newcastle and Middlesbrough, but I think boxing brings us all together.

“I can’t see a split crowd for me and for Lewis. I see them all being there to get behind all of us North East lads no matter where we’re from.

“We’ll all rise to the challenge. The North East hasn’t had boxing here for a while so now is the time to push on.”

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