PROFESSIONAL BOXING AUSTRALIA PREVIEW
By TOM WATT on Aug 6 2015
This Saturday (August 8th) sees a new promotional company, Professional Boxing Australia, present its first live show as they set out to become a force in the Australian Boxing scene. Driven by the prospect of raising the standard and support of Boxing across the country as well as bringing back the prestige to the once highly-coveted Australian Title, PBA kick off with an action-packed card featuring two Aussie Title fights and a selection of some of the best young talent from Melbourne to Sydney. Below are a few selected fights to look out for.
The Main Event will see reigning Australian Light Heavyweight Champion, Kerry Foley (15-2-1, 12 KOs) make the first defense of his title since beating Dane Mulivai in Queensland in May as he faces off with a familiar face in Joel Casey (16-14-3, 10 KOs). This will be the hard-hitting Champion’s first fight back in his home-town of Sydney since February 2014 and will be the second time in his career he will face Casey – the pair first met in 2007, with Foley taking a UD victory and delivering Casey the first loss if his career. Expect this fight to be nothing short of a war, despite Foley’s impressive Boxing in his win over Mulivai, the Dee Why fighter has a penchant for getting involved in a battle and the durable Casey will be doing everything he can to drag this fight into the trenches.
Second on the bill is another Australian Title fight, this time for the recently vacated Super-Middleweight Title and will see the widely avoided, Brisbane-based Faris Chevalier (8-10-0, 5 KOs) take on the undefeated, Melbourne-based Tej Pratap Singh (4-0-1, 2 KOs). The domestic Super-Middleweight Division is growing in depth and the winner of this fight can look to try and set up fights with the likes of Blake Capparello, Sakio Bika, Jake Carr or even Daniel Geale who has just announced his decision to move up to 168 lbs and have at least one fight on Australian shores before looking overseas, plenty to fight for in this one.
Up before the two Title bouts we have hot prospect and former Australian Super Middleweight Champion, Jake Carr (10-0-0), taking on tough Samoan, Togasilimai Letoa (16-16-1, 8 KOs) in an eight-round contest which should be little more than a ‘keep-busy’ fight for the talented and highly touted Carr who recently vacated his Title to allow Chevalier and Singh to battle it out. With Daniel Geale at ringside, Carr will be looking to put on a show and demonstrate why he deserves a crack at ‘The Real Deal’ next.
Saturday night will also feature Australia’s former Commonwealth Games fighter, Mark Lucas (3-0-0, 1 KO) as he continues to develop and grow as a fighter. The middleweight prospect has looked good in his previous outings so far although a fight-week illness prevented him from looking his best last time out in Hurstville although he still managed to deliver the win. Lucas takes on Queensland’s Zorran Cassaday (1-1-0) in a four round contest, Cassaday was stopped in the 3rd round by Kyron Dryden last time out so will be doing what he can in front of the Sydney crowd and TV cameras to vanquish that defeat and kick-start his career.
Further down the card we see Central Coast-based Dillon Bargero (0-1-0),son of former Aussie Champion Marc Bargero, takes on Sydney-based Ben Savva (0-1-0) – both fighters faced very tough debut fights earlier this year in Hurstville that resulted in tight decision losses and they will be looking to bounce back and kick-start their careers with wins on Saturday night. Savva hails an excellent amateur record in the UK that included finishing as runner up in the 2006 ABAE competition. Bargero is moving down in weight following his first fight against MMA crossover athlete, Alex Volkanovski and is hoping that the move down to 147 lbs will see him facing much more manageable power, something he struggled with in his first outing as a pro. Although low on the bill, this is a high-stakes fight for both involved and will leave the loser with a mountain to climb if they are to resurrect their pro career – expect a raucous crowd as well with the local favourite, Savva, boasting a healthy support.
Saturday night will be Professional Boxing Australia’s first show and with the action-packed and highly competitive card they have put together complimented by the World-Class commentary team of Ben Damon, Nigel Benn and Daniel Geale should make for compelling viewing. If the format takes off then this could well be the start of a new era in Australian Boxing where value is placed back on winning the Australian Title and watching good quality, Australian Boxing is easily accessible to fans around the country – with the price of streaming at $14.95 compared the usual $49.95 or above on Main Event this offers fantastic value - the war between Foley and Casey will be worth the admission alone, so show your support and make sure you come along to North Sydney Leagues Club or tune in August 8th at 6pm (9am UK time).
Tickets are still available via EventBrite and the whole card can be streamed live at epicentre.tv.
Weigh-In for Saturday’s show will be held at North Sydney Leagues Club at 5.30pm Friday August 7th.
1. FLOYD MAYWEATHER JR.
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(left) Jake Carr defeated Renold Quinlan to win the Australian Title on the Geale v Fletcher undercard