Louis Fielding reckons he’s now the ‘genuine underdog’ in the Midlands Boxing Series with the field for the tournament halved. Fielding is one of four men still in the running to become the Midlands super featherweight champion when the competition is done and dusted.
The elimination tournament, staged by Errol Johnson’s BCB Promotions, will still begin as planned on Saturday February 10, in the Stadium Suite at Walsall Football Club. But there will no be no quarter-final ties after the withdrawals of Kane Baker, Manny Zaber and Josh Baillie, while Jack Summers also no longer features.
The last four bouts were due to be over eight rounds, but will now drop down to six as was planned for the quarters. The final is the usual 10 as is standard for area title fights. It leaves Tamworth’s Fielding, who has challenged for the belt he’s chasing, to take on Derby’s Indi Sangha, the only man in the competition with an unbeaten pro record. It’s the only clash left that remains the same as when the draw was made in December, with Sangha having raced to seven wins from seven outings with one TKO.
It includes a points victory over former area champion Paul Holt, a Brummie based in Nuneaton, who halted Fielding in six to claim Midlands honours back in September 2016. Holt will tackle Chasetown’s Luke Jones after originally being paired with Baker and then Baillie, with Fielding hoping he gets to meet him with the title on the line again.
‘Flash’ Fielding insists he’ll prove his doubters wrong and down Holt if he gets the chance, so they can do it all again in a trilogy to decide once and for all who is the better fighter.
The 27-year-old is determined to become Tamworth’s second area champion, after missing out on making history the first time around. Charlie Williams, a fellow Tamworth Boxing Club graduate with both still trained by Charlie’s dad Karl, achieved that maiden feat at lightweight last year instead.
Fielding said: “Maybe it’s a bit of jealousy about it that’s driving me on, Charlie and Karl will be fine with that as long as I go and win the title. “Karl’s been my coach since I started boxing aged 11, Charlie was about eight, at the time, and was running around the gym driving everyone mad!
“I’m focussed on what I’ve got to do and training has gone really well. I wouldn’t be in this tournament if I didn’t think I could get through it.
“I’ve never been the genuine underdog like this before, there are a few people who don’t think I’ll beat Indi, but there’s always pressure in any fight.
“It’s been the same opponent since the draw, so it’s the same tactics. He’s a southpaw, so I’ve been working with lots of different sparring partners.
“He’s shorter than me and I think that will be a factor. He’ll try and get in close, so it’s up to me to make sure he can’t do that. He’ll struggle, if I get my game-plan right.
“He’s a slick counter puncher and a tricky kid, so I’ve got to take him out of his comfort zone. I don’t know much about Luke and you would have to favour Paul’s experience.
“I’m sure all of us will perform, none of us would be boxing at this level if we couldn’t adapt to different opponents.
“It seems like so long ago me and Paul were in there for the title, it’s a distant memory and it was only 16 months ago.
“I’ve taken positives from it, I was told I was four to two up on points and winning the round I was stopped in.
“It would be great to have a title rematch with Paul. To me, it feels like when rather than if. We’ll find out whether it’s fate or not. If it happens like I want, there might be a third fight!”
Walsall’s Rachel Ball and Coventry’s Jordan Cooke also feature in the home corner in other offerings on the Midlands Boxing Series’ first fight night.
Tickets are still on sale now through the boxers on Facebook. Alternatively, call the Walsall FC Box Office on 01922 651 414, extension 416.
They are priced at £35 standard and £60 ringside, the latter option to include food. It will be £40 entry on the door on the night. The Grosvenor Casino Walsall will sponsor the show and host the weigh in and after-show party (over 18s). Find out more about Grosvenor Casino Walsall, click here: http://www.grosvenorcasinos.com/local-casinos/walsall/