Countless times we have heard the old adage that ‘timing is everything in boxing.’ How often have we seen a passing of the torch from a great champion evidently on the decline to a fresher, hungrier fighter climbing the mountain?
The big announcement for VIP over the weekend was that Josh Warrington will defend his IBF Featherweight Title against Carl Frampton, in a festive clash, at the Manchester Arena on 22nd December.
While Warrington will enter as champion, it will be Frampton entering the contest as the large betting favourite and as the proverbial king in the eyes of the boxing public.
The greatest skill in timing a fight is not in taking advantage of an ageing, slowing fighter, but rather catching the exact point where a class fighter reaches the mountain’s peak and takes the first step down the other side.
Despite being no evidence to suggest Frampton’s best days are behind him, his solitary loss coming by way of that very tight decision in his rematch with fellow elitist Leo Santa Cruz, Warrington’s VIP team are confident that their ascension to the mountain’s peak can align with the very start of Frampton’s descent.
To add extra spice to the match up, it will be the first time Steve Wood who manages Warrington, will have crossed swords with his former fighter Jamie Moore, who trains Frampton, ironically out of the VIP gym.
That irony certainly showed its benefit over the weekend as Marc Leach, seemingly taking inspiration from training around the likes of Frampton, produced a career best win, on VIP’s season opener at the Victoria Warehouse in Manchester, to thrust him right into the domestic title mix at bantamweight.
Matching Louis Norman in an Eliminator for the English Title, Leach was quick to work, flooring Norman 3 times in the second session, the referee waving off the contest as the Shepshed man’s corner mounted the apron, towel in hand.
Only previously beaten in championship class, not even former World Title challenger Charlie Edwards, had dealt with Norman so convincingly.
On this performance, exciting times are ahead for the ‘Livewire’.
Danny Wright and Lyndon Arthur both in promotional deals with Frank Warren, produced good performances, Wright with a solid 6 rounds against former Hungarian Champion Zoltan Szabo and Arthur dispatching his over-matched opponent with a chopping right hand in the 1st round.
‘Sugar’ Kane Gardner unleashed a 15 punch barrage deserving of the moniker, to bring the referees invention in the 3rd round of his scheduled 6 and debutants Bradley Rea and Muhammad Ali kick off their pro careers with clear decisions over 4 rounds, in front of rapturous support.
James Moorcroft over 6, Adam Ridge, Jamie Mitchell and Andrew Fleming, all over 4 rounds – produced good displays improving their unbeaten records and moving on to further outings before the end of the year.
Scoring aside in the big fight on Saturday night, GGG and Canelo produced another classic, showing why they are the P4P kings, in an evenly matched and at times brutal contest.
Despite many ringsiders once again feeling GGG had done enough, it wasn’t to be, and Canelo took a majority decision setting up a likely third showdown.
Should that take place, it would be nice for it to happen away from Las Vegas – which is pro Canelo – but the greatest danger for Golovkin, is that like VIP are hoping for Frampton, he has possibly taken that step over the peak of the mountain.