BRADLEY Saunders believes Friday night’s fight in Gateshead will be one of the most “special” moments of his boxing career.
The unbeaten 27-year-old has fought all over the world in a glittering career including winning medals at the 2007 World Championships in Chicago and 2010 Commonwealth Games, as well as competing at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.
But he says topping the bill in his eighth professional contest against experienced Pole Krzysztof Szot this Friday will take some beating.
“I’ve had getting on for 200 fights as an amateur and pro,” said the Sedgefield talent, who is managed by one of Britain’s leading fight figures, Frank Warren.
“But getting to headline Friday night’s show at Gateshead Leisure Centre is something special.
“I’ve been grateful to Frank so far for some of the shows I’ve boxed on.
“He’s put me on some top-line events, David Haye v Dereck Chisora at Upton Park, a Ricky Burns world title defence in Glasgow and Chisora v Malik Scott at Wembley in the summer.
“I also boxed on the Freddie Flintoff show in Manchester.
“All have been big occasions but this Friday is going to be brilliant.
“I’ve been lucky to have great support so far and people have been to London, Glasgow and Manchester with me.
“But now I am fighting on home ground this Friday and I’ll be looking to put on a good show for the crowd.”
Saunders will be topping the bill which is being staged by North-East promoter Steve Wraith, in conjunction with Warren’s son, Francis.
“Top marks to them for putting on such a great show,” said the light-welterweight, who has won all seven of his pro appearances, five inside the distance.
Saunders is now based in Marbella after parting company with Peter Cope, the head coach at Gus Robinson Developments.
But he remains closely linked to home and has just gained a sponsorship deal from local cable contractors CBL.
“I’m grateful for their support,” said Saunders. “I’d like to thank Andrew Haygarth and CBL for their backing.
“I hope to give them a great performance on Friday.”
Saunders will be joined on the event by two of his old Gus Robinson Development gym colleagues, unbeaten duo Simon Vallily and Lewis Winton.
Cruiserweight Vallily takes on former British champ Paul David while Winton faces Yorkshire-based Syrian Youssef Al Hamidi.
l FOR ticket info, contact Tracy on 07944695367