The Sky Sports cameras return to the Titanic City in just over seven weeks time as Ryan Burnett [17(11)-0] defends his IBF bantamweight title for the first time – taking on former sparring partner and current WBA champion Zhanat Zhakiyanov [27(18)-1(0)] in a unification.
Ahead of today’s first press conference at the Europa Hotel there had already been two fights confirmed.
Lagmore lightweight Paul Hyland Jr [16(6)-0] defends his IBF East/West Europe belt against Clondalkin’s Stephen Ormond [24(13)-4(1)] in a Belfast v Dublin battle that will decide a new Irish champion.
Lenadoon light welter Tyrone McKenna [14(6)-0-1] was also granted a fight with a big English name after a year of calling out his entire division. The rangey southpaw faces Tommy Coyle of Hull, a British title challenger last year.
In addition to these, Poleglass super feather James Tennyson [19(15)-2(2)] was also confirmed to be on the bill.
At the Europa Hotel today there were further details revealed.
Tennyson will defend his WBA International belt against Scotland’s Darren Traynor [14(6)-1(1)]. ‘The Assassin ‘ had been due to fight the Aberdeen boxer in a British featherweight title final eliminator last year, but would step aside to allow Traynor a shot at champion Ryan Walsh.
Traynor was subsequently stopped in the fifth round, as was Tennyson when he took on Walsh five months later.
Coalisland super feather Feargal McCrory [6(3)-0] will also feature on the show having impressed on the previous Sky card in the city where he stopped recent BBBoC Central Area champ Paul Holt in the second round.
Dublin welterweight Jay Byrne [5(1)-2(0)] has a provisional slot on the bill. The Loughlinstown man proved game opposition to Felix Cash and Josh Kelly on Matchroom cards in the Spring and has been rewarded with a fight on home solid. However, his appearance is dependent on his bout with another Matchroom prospect, Anthony Fowler, three weeks prior in Liverpool, and he must come through this bout unscated.
Sunderland’s Josh Kelly [3(2)-0], a gym mate of Burnett at Boxing Booth, will also feature. The English welterweight was a Rio Olympian and is seen as one of the hottest prospects in Europe. ‘Pretty Boy Kelly’ will also feature on the Anthony Crolla v Ricky Burns undercard at the Manchester Arena two weeks beforehand.