BOXING STILL ON THE UP AND UP

posted on: 20/07/2017

By Frank Warren

David Haye

Boxing fans have got it made at the moment and the TV options just got bigger with the news of the channel Dave committing itself to the sport for the next three years.

It is good for the game and, more so, the fans who will never have to go for too long without their fistic fix, with BoxNation, BT Sport, Sky, Channel 5 and ITV Box Office all in the boxing business.

Yes, it is a crowded market at the moment but, as I have always said, the more the merrier and it just goes to show the tremendous appeal boxing currently enjoys. The sport is more that punching its weight these days, make no mistake about that.

It makes me think back to when the knockers were having a field day not so long ago, particularly the likes of the columnist Pat Collins – formerly of the Mail on Sunday – who used to take great delight in writing that boxing was a dead sport.

Well, it looks alive and well to me – and it is going from strength to strength. The addition of David Haye and his business partner Richard Schaefer only serves to bolster the promotional pool and provides more opportunities for fighters.

I have heard mutterings suggesting that televised boxing is at saturation point, but I suspect this is more to do with now having more than one major player in the market place.

It is not saturation, it is competition, proper competition and money in the sport. There is more than one game in town now and it is about having the resolve to compete and to continue delivering for the fans.

We all need to be continually seeking to raise our game in the face of increased competition, but I tend to not to concern myself on what others are doing to any great extent. Our focus has always been on the longer-term, developing young fighters into champions and putting on big crowd-pleasing fights along the way.

David Haye is starting again from scratch in promotional terms and has given himself a good base with the boxers he has signed up to kick-start his broadcast deal with Dave.

It will be fascinating to see how it all plays out and I wish them every success with the new venture.

One member of Haye’s squad who will need to make his moves fairly quickly is his heavyweight signing Joe Joyce who, at 31, is a latecomer to the professional ranks.

Joe Joyce

The Olympic silver medalist is an exciting recruit to the domestic heavyweight scene and I am sure he is one the public will get behind as he joins the journey towards world honours alongside our own young prospects Daniel Dubois and Nathan Gorman.

If the heavyweight picture is thriving with healthy competition it tends to have a knock-on effect on the other divisions and the sport as a whole.

Like it or not, competition will always be the name of the game.

More from Frank tomorrow

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