Belfast lightweight Paul Hyland Jr has British title fight confirmed

Paul Hyland Jr [17(6)-0] WILL fight for the British title this Summer – if he comes through his fight on Saturday night.

The Lagmore lightweight headlines an MHD Promotions dinner show at the Europa Hotel in Belfast on April 14th, facing Portsmouth puncher David Birmingham [6(3)-1(1)] in a ten-rounder.

Should Hyland defeat Birmingham, who has stepped in at late notice to replace Floyd Moore, and come through the bout unscathed, he will go on to challenge champion Lewis Ritson [15(9)-0] in June.

The BBBoC circular released today confirmed that an agreement had been reached between the two parties and that Hyland will challenge Ritson at the Newcastle Metro Arena on Saturday June 16th, live on Sky Sports.

Hyland was designated the mandatory challenger last month but his team elected to continue seasoning the fighter and his April 14th fight date remained.

The 27-year-old is returning after almost six months out with a broken jaw suffered in his fourth and final fight of a break-out 2017.

Moore though was forced to withdraw – and retire – due to a head injury and Birmingham has stood in at short notice.

Hyland still need to come through the challenge of the former Southern Area title challenger, and do so in good fashion, for his own title shot to take place.

Ritson, who co-headlines the Matchroom bill with Olympian Josh Kelly, is aiming to win the Lonsdale belt outright with a third successful defence.

The Newcastle puncher dethroned Robbie Barrett and won himself a deal with Eddie Hearn’s outfit back in October. The Northerner then defended the belt twice in the space of a month with quickfire stoppage wins of Joe Murray and Scott Cardle.

While Hyland always looked a potential third opponent for the 24-year-old, there was never any certainty to this belief.

The Irishman’s manager Mark Dunlop had stated his belief that Matchroom were afraid of matching Ritson with Hyland – while there was also the prospect of the ticket-selling Belfast fighter featuring on an upcoming Ryan Burnett undercard in the city. In addition to this, the possibility of Ritson unifying with the winner of Sean Dodd’s May 5th Commonwealth title defence versus Tommy Coyle was also floated.

It will, however, be Hyland in the opposite corner on June 16th should he – and he should – do the business this Saturday night in Belfast


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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on, Boxing News,, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: