Hartlepool & Horden boxer Anth Hardy to fight Wiltshire’s Joe Hughes for vacant English light-welterweight title

Team Hardy, from the left, Daniel Robinson, Alan Temple, Anth Hardy and Peter Cope
Team Hardy, from the left, Daniel Robinson, Alan Temple, Anth Hardy and Peter Cope
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Anth Hardy is to challenge for the English light-welterweight title after accepting a match with Joe Hughes.

The two in-form fighters will battle it out for the vacant belt at Bath Pavillion a week on Saturday.

We’re under no illusions. We know we are going as underdogs but what a great opportunity for Anth

PETER COPE

Unbeaten Hardy had been in training to box on a show at Gateshead Academy on Friday, July 24, so was happy to accept the offer.

The Horden star is on a seven-bout winning streak while Hughes, from Wiltshire has won all 11 of his 12 contests, five by way of stoppage.

Gus Robinson Developments head coach Peter Cope said it was a “great opportunity” for the 23-year-old.

“We’re under no illusions,” he admitted. “We know we are going as underdogs.

“But what a great opportunity for Anth.”

Hughes looks a boxer in top nick, reeling off three title wins in his last three outings.

The 24-year-old outpointed Kristian Dochev in Bath for the vacant International Masters light-welterweight title before stopping Philip Bowes at the O2 Arena last October to lift the Southern Area crown.

And last time out, he stopped Jaba Shalutashvili in round eight in Bristol to clinch the vacant International Boxing Organisation’s belt.

While Hardy has not fought for any titles, he should not be lacking in confidence.

The southpaw has won all seven of his pro fights since signing for the Gus Robinson Developments team in Hartlepool.

His best display came last time out at the Borough Hall, where he outpointed Fonz Alexander over four impressive rounds.