Daniel Cope to fight Tom Whitfield in big North-East boxing derby

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DANIEL Cope is to put his 100 per cent record on the line when he takes part in a battle of two of the North-East’s unbeaten talents.

The Hartlepool fighter, who has made a flawless start to life as a boxing pro, will scrap it out with Tom Whitfield at Houghton-le-Spring on Sunday, March 8.

Whitfield, from Birtley, boxes out of the in-form Mal Gates gym in South Shields.

Both fighters have the same perfect records – two bouts and two wins – but something will have to give on the Phil Jeffries’ promoted boxing bonanza at Rainton Meadows Arena.

It was a tough match to make - the trainers at the Gus Robinson Developments and Harton & Westoe Welfare gyms are good friends.

But Peter Cope says he is looking forward to the welterweight showdown, which is scheduled for six rounds.

“I’m friends with Mal and all the lads in our gyms get on great,” said the Gus Robinson Developments head coach.

“We do a lot of sparring together, great sparring I may add, in our gyms.

“But this is business.

“We can be friends before the fight and we’ll be friends after it.

“But for the six rounds, it’s a fight, we’ll be after beating them and Mal and Tom will be the same.

“It looks a tight fight, a genuine 50-50 bout in my eyes.

“Both lads have the same records and this is a step up for both.

“It’s a North-East derby and one I think the fans will love.”

Daniel is one quarter of the fantastic four - the quartet of the fighting Cope brothers.

Peter is one of the country’s brightest super-feather/ lightweight prospects and Adam and Luke are making brilliant progress in the amateur game.

Daniel, like his brothers, is an exciting fighter, who coach and dad, Peter Snr, has high hopes for.

“I’ve been very pleased with how well Daniel has transferred from the amateurs to the pros,” he said.

“I think he can win a Northern Area title level and get up to English title level.

“Daniel is a little bit different to Peter. He is ambitious and wants to do well, but I don’t think he sees himself in boxing for years.

“I think he’d like to have some fun and earn himself a few bob.

“This will be a good fight for him, he has the chance to make a step forward and hopefully get himself a decent payday.”