IT’S TOOWOOMBA VERSUS THE WORLD. It’s set to be an exciting few months ahead with three local boxers ready to travel overseas and take on some of the best fighters from across the globe.
It all starts on May 7 when former IBO World Champion Jack Asis travels to China to take on current WBA No.2 Xu Chan for Chan’s WBA super featherweight International title. Chan, promoted by China’s number one promoter Liu Gang is closing in on a shot for the WBA World title making this bout a World title eliminator.
The very next day heavyweight Herman Ene-Purcell challenges OPBF Champion Kyotara Fujimoto in Tokyo.
Capping off the big international bouts on June 24 in Leeds, England Kris George makes the first defence of his Commonwealth welter weight title taking on mandatory challenger Larry Ekundayo.
“It’s really exciting times for boxing on the Darling Downs,” Brendon Smith said.
Smith is the trainer/manager of Ene-Purcell and Asis and is the manager of the Craig Monagle trained Kris George.
“It really is Toowoomba vs the World,” Smith added.
“It’s an incredible feat to have three fighters from Toowoomba preparing to main event shows in China, Japan and England.
“Through TGW & Smithy’s Promotions we’ve always had the vision of giving our fighters the best opportunities to further their careers.
“For Kris, Jack and Herman – they all have massive fights and massive opportunities in front of them.
“I know all three will take the opportunity with both hands.”
With massive opportunity comes massive challenges.
In Jack Asis’ case he fights a man who only has 2 losses to his name, has won his last 8 straight fights and is in the most powerful stable in China headed by Liu Gang.
For Herman Ene-Purcell – he faces a challenge the size of Mount Fuji (almost literally!) Kyotara Fujiyama has a record of 16-1 with 8 knock outs and is promoted by Japan’s number one promoter Mr Hagimori.
It’s a similar tale for Kris George. His bout is being promoted by one of the UK’s biggest promoters Frank Warren after Warren was successful in winning the rights to host the bout when it went to purse bids.
George’s opponent Larry Ekundayo is the mandatory challenger and undefeated in a 12 bout career.
“They’re mega fights for all three boys,” Smith said.
” Xu Chan, Kyotara Fujiyama and Larry Ekundayo are elite fighters on the World stage.
“Between them they have just 3 losses in 42 bouts.
“However Jack Asis, Herman Ene-Purcell and Kris George are also World class and there is a reason they’re in one corner for these big fights – they’ve earned it.
“They’ve earned it and they deserve to headline in big fights anywhere in the World.
“They’re credit to themselves, their families and of course to Toowoomba.”
Toowoomba fans have been a big part of the journey for these three fighters.
Jack Asis has fought in the Garden City 8 times, Herman Ene-Purcell 11 times and Kris George 10 times.
“What gives me the most pride is these three boys mainly climbed the ladder winning big fights in their home town through our own TGW & Smithy Bring the Big Fights promotions.
“Kris George built his name with big wins in the Garden City culminating with his Commonwealth title victory over Cameron Hammond.
“Jack Asis starred on a number of our local shows on his way to winning a World title in Newcastle and defending his title in South Africa.
“Herman Ene-Purcell began as a diamond in the rough who first appeared in the ring as a member of the Valleys rugby league club in a tag team charity match before turning to boxing full time and working his way up to the mandatory position in the OPBF.
“That’s what our shows are all about.
“Showcasing to our home city our home grown talent and giving these fighters an opportunity to further their careers.
“Kris, Jack and Herman are a perfect example of that.
“They’ve all main evented our local cards now they’re main eventing all over the World.
“It’s an amazing achievement and they’ve all done it from right here in Toowoomba.
“These three boys will beam with pride when they’re announced as hailing from Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia.
“All three are great ambassadors for our region and here’s hoping all three return from their overseas bouts with championship belts around their waist.”