PETER Cope will fight for the Northern Area super-featherweight title when he makes his ring return next month.
The gifted Hartlepool fighter will bid for the vacant belt against unbeaten Middlesbrough boxer John Green in South Shields on Sunday, October 12.
It will be Cope’s first bout since the first defeat of his pro career in July when he lost in London to Mitchell Smith in a challenge for the vacant English super-feather championship.
Cope’s coach – and dad – does not believe his son will suffer any “hangover” from that 10-round points loss in the battle of the young unbeaten prospects at York Hall.
“We were looking for a decent six-rounder for his first fight back,” said Peter Cope Snr.
“But then came the chance to fight for the Northern Area title and Peter was all for it.
“It is a dangerous bout – he has sparred with Green before and John has made a tremendous start as a pro.
“Peter has always wanted to be a Northern Area champ like other Hartlepool fighters like Ian Cooper, Michael Hunter and John T Kelly.
“I do feel Peter is a championship fighter. When he got a place on the South Shields show he said ‘dad, I don’t want to fight a journeyman’.
“He wants a good fight and something which will bring out the best in him.
“I think this is a cracking fight and one which will get Peter on the move again, providing he wins.”
The Gus Robinson Developments head coach added: “I don’t think there will be a hangover for Peter.
“While he was beaten by a wide points margin last time out, Smith proved a very good boxer who I think will go on to British championship level and possibly beyond.
“He’s been training hard and the signs look good.
“There is a lot of work to do, the fight is just over three weeks away but he’s raring to go.”
Green will present a threat – while he has only boxed four times he boasts more stoppage wins than Cope after beating two of his opponents inside the distance.
The 24-year-old Boro lad has won three bouts – his only set-back being a draw in Scotland against Shaun McShane, a contest many thought the away fighter had done enough to get the decision.
As an amateur, he boxed out of the Phil Thomas School of Boxing club, for whom he was crowned ABA National novices champion.
But since turning pro, he has based himself with Darlington trainer Paul Hamilton.
Cope Snr added: “People might think it’s early for John.
“But his people wanted the fight and I think the fact he has stopped an unbeaten Liverpool kid in Liverpool persuaded the area council of the British Boxing Board of Control that he’s up to the task.
“Peter and him have sparred as amateurs and John is pretty good.
“He had a decent amateur career, like Peter I think he only had 30 bouts or something like that.
“Green might not be a Mitchell Smith, but the fact he has won a couple of times on the road suggests he’s a danger.
“There is a bit of rivalry there too – nothing nasty but I think a lot of Peter’s mates know John’s friends and there will be a fair bit of banter.
“I expect quite a few fans will travel from Middlesbrough and it will be a good atmosphere.”
Cope will be joined on the Steve Wraith-promoted show at Temple Park by three unbeaten Hartlepool prospects.
Gus Robinson Developments prospects Daniel Cope and Anth Hardy will have four rounders, while Dave Garside and Neil Fannan featherweight Tommy Ward has a mouthwatering match with Esham Pickering over six rounds.