Cope takes on Hussain at Summer Rumble

Peter Cope
Peter Cope

PETER Cope has another title in his sights – but he must take care of an irritating problem first.

PETER Cope has another title in his sights – but he must take care of an irritating problem first.

The unbeaten Hartlepool boxer takes on brash Sheffield fighter Qasim Hussain at the Summer Rumble in Sunderland tomorrow.

But there are plans in place for Cope to fight for the Northern Area title in Newcastle in September against Geordie featherweight Dougie Curran.

The popular Gus Robinson Developments southpaw, who is backed by his large and noisy ‘Barmy Army’ wherever he boxes, says a championship bout is just what his career needs.

Cope lifted his first professional honour 12 months ago at the Stadium of Light when he outpointed Gavin Reid to win a classic International Masters super-bantamweight 10-rounder.

A Northern Area triumph would further boost his ranking and claims for bigger tests, such as the English championship challenge.

“I think I could be three fights away from something like an English title bout,” said the 22-year-old.

“There’s talk of a Northern Area title fight next against Dougie.

“I’d say Dougie is a lot better than his record suggests.

“I think if he’d been looked after better and wasn’t getting taken all over the place to fight then he’d be in Britain’s top 10.

“He is good and fighting him in Newcastle would be great.

“But first things first, I need to get this out of the way tomorrow.”

Indeed he does.

Boxing is littered with fighters who have come a cropper because they have taken their eye off the proverbial ball.

This is unlikely to happen in this instance.

Cope has a 100 per cent record to protect and his coach – and dad – Peter Snr will make sure he is fully focused.

And that should not be difficult – Hussain has been quite ‘vocal’ on various social network sites, promising Cope an uncomfortable afternoon.

Peter Jnr said: “I think a boxer willl tell you that a bit of a fear factor makes you train harder and fight better.

“Kas has made me train harder but that’s more to do with all the stuff he’s been saying on the internet.

“I’m really looking forward to fighting him.”

Dad Peter Snr added: “I think Hussain has got under Peter’s skin a little bit.

“Peter should win, but I know this lad’s coming to give it a go and.

“If Peter gives him any sort of chance, Hussain will pounce – he needs to box well.”

And if this six-round fight is just half as good as the Cope v Reid International Masters super-bantamweight shoot-out from the 2012 Summer Rumble, fans should be in for a treat.

“It was a really hard fight against Gavin,” said young Peter.

“I thought I boxed well and then showed I can tough it out as well.

“It was great experience and it will stand me in good stead when title fights come along.

“I’m looking forward to tomorrow and I know I need to win.”

Cope is part of a 10-bout bill at the Stadium of Light.

Two local stars make their pro debuts, Cope’s Gus Robinson Developments team-mate Anth Hardy, and three-time former junior champ Mick Hadfield.

Horden lightweight Hardy is up against Matt Seawright while Hadfield meets Jon Fry.

The Ward brothers fight on the same bill for the first time, Martin facing Hungary’s Adrian Fuzesi and Tommy tackling Ben Morrish.

Tickets are available at the main entrance at the Stadium of Light. Doors open at 12.30pm with boxing due to start at 1.15pm.