Fielding all set for first British title defence against Brophy

WBN 31/07/2017

Rocky Fielding’s first defence of his British super-middleweight title takes place next month on September 30 when he meets David Brophy at the Liverpool Echo Arena. Fielding won the belt when he defeated John Ryder by a split decision back in April in a really good fight between the domestic rivals.

The man from Liverpool has just the one defeat on his professional record, which came against Callum Smith last year. Fielding was caught inside the opening round by the big-hitting super-middleweight, who is one of the men to be taking part in the World Boxing Super Series, where he has boxing odds of 3/50 to win his opening fight in that competition against Erik Skoglund.

Fielding will be hoping to get back into a world title shot position himself following the setback in 2016 and will see his fight against Brophy as a stepping stone; his opponent currently holds the Commonwealth strap, which will also be on the line during their contest. The British champion is a former holder of the Commonwealth title but had to vacate the belt when he failed to make the weight for his fight against Charles Adamu back in 2014.

Brophy is also a fighter who has a sole defeat on his record as he lost to George Groves when the vacant WBA international super-middleweight title was up for grabs in April 2016. He bounced back from that defeat with two comfortable wins over Kelvin Young and Kiril Psonko respectively, though.

The Scottish boxer produced a career-best performance last time out in March when he travelled to Australia to win the Commonwealth crown against the defending champion Zac Dunn. The challenger was the underdog in Victoria but he was able to stop his Australian opponent in the seventh round to inflict the first defeat of Dunn’s career.

The card in Liverpool is also set to feature Paul Butler, who is making his debut for Matchroom Sport. The former world champion is set to meet Stuart Hall for the second time in his career, this time in a WBA title eliminator. When the pair met three years ago it was for Hall’s IBF crown and it was Butler who got the winning result from the judges’ scorecards on a split decision.

Butler defended his IBF title successfully against Ismael Garnica shortly after the Hall victory; however, he was well beaten against Zolani Tete in the eighth round of the contest in 2015, losing his crown. Since that defeat, Butler has recovered well with five victories to his name, including that over former European champion Silviu Olteanu.

The Babyfaced Assassin is back up to bantamweight and a win over Hall would put him in line for a shot at Jamie Donnell’s world title or potentially even dropping down to challenge for Kal Yafai’s super-flyweight belt later in 2017. The British boxer is unbeaten in 22 fights and if he was to meet Butler, it would be one of the biggest domestic fights of 2017.