Peter Cope is seven days away for what he hopes will prove a career-defining fight.
The Hartlepool boxer travels to Doncaster to face Andy Townend in a Commonwealth lightweight championship eliminator.
I know I have to stick to my boxing – it’s not rocket science is it?PETER COPE
It’s a huge night for the 26-year-old, who felt the force of the Barnsley knockout specialist exactly three years ago in the same venue.
In fact, promoter, Stefy Bull has coined the event at the Doncaster Dome as “Repeat or Revenge.”
Cope is not using the r-word but the quality southpaw knows that if he can upset the powerful hitter he can get among the big prizes with a victory.
Townend, known as the KO Kid, stopped him in the fourth round of their English super-featherweight eliminator in December 2014, putting Cope down twice.
The quality southpaw got up on both occasions with referee Mark Lyson calling a halt after the second visit to the canvas. That was one of 13 stoppage wins for Townend in a career which totals 19 victories and just four defeats.
Cope deviated from his boxing skills that night, to his cost, and he told SportMail how sticking to his game-plan a week tonight will be essential.
“I’ve seen a lot of Andy since the night we fought and he’s done good,” said Cope. “He’s won all but one of the fights he’s had since then.
“He’s good and he’s beaten quite a lot of decent lads, largely through his punchpower.
“I know I have to stick to my boxing – it’s not rocket science is it?
“I played into his hands the time we fought before in Doncaster, but he can be out-boxed and can be beaten.”
Cope has won twice since his switch from Gus Robinson Developments to being coached by Neil Fannan and managed by Phil Jeffries.
But, ironically, it was a defeat in London to Paul Hyland Jnr in March which strengthened his credentials, losing on a disputed points decision to a boxer who is now the IBF European lightweight champ.
“I’ve proved I can box the top lads,” said the boxer who is sponsored by Netting Services Ltd. “I’m not saying I’ll beat them all, but I can mix it at this level.”
Cope has won 15 of his 19 appearances, his four defeats all at championship standard.
Townend has just moved up to lightweight after May’s crack at the vacant Commonwealth super-featherweight title was lost on the scales. He stopped Jon Kays inside two rounds but failed to make the weight.
“It’s an important fight,” added Cope. “Beating Andy would put me right in there,” he added.
For tickets, contact Neil on 07891101399.