James Tennyson to fight for WORLD TITLE


James Tennyson [22(18)-2(2)] will challenge for a world title in his next fight.

It has emerged tonight that the Belfast super featherweight, the reigning European and Commonwealth champion, will challenge new IBF beltholder Tevin Farmer [26(5)-4(2)-1] at the TD Garden in Boston on Saturday October 20th.

Dan Rafael of ESPN broke the news tonight that Farmer would make the first defence of his red belt, a voluntary, on the Matchroom USA bill which will be aired in America on streaming service DAZN and on this side of the World on Sky Sports.

25-year-old Tennyson had been due to make a defence of his European title next month against France’s mandatory challenger Samir Ziani but instead will fight for world honours, with Farmer’s promoter Lou DiBella revealing that they are in the process of finalising paperwork.

Since being stopped in a British featherweight title challenge by Ryan Walsh in 2016, ‘The Assassin’ has rebounded amazingly and become one of Irish boxing’s most unmissable fighters. Last year he scored three domestic knockout wins over Declan Geraghty, Ryan Doyle, and Darren Traynor and followed this up in May by climbing off the canvas to stop champion Martin J Ward and claim the continental and Commonwealth straps.

Now the Poleglass puncher will look to become Ireland’s 22nd World champion, following on from Portlaoise’s TJ Doheny who also won an IBF belt on away soil last week, outpointing super bantamweight champion Ryosuke Iwasa in Tokyo, Japan.

Ranked #1 by the WBA, this route had looked the likeliest avenue for Tennyson, who is managed by Mark Dunlop and trained by Tony Dunlop [no relation], but the #7 ranked fighter with the IBF will instead face Farmer in just over eight weeks time.

‘American Idol’ Farmer won the vacant belt, which was lost on the scales last year by Gervonta Davis, earlier this month with a dominant points win over veteran Billy Dib in Sydney, dropping.the Aussie in the ninth and sending him into retirement.

The 28-year-old Philly puncher has recently been embroiled in an online war of words with Dubliner Jono Carroll [16(3)-0] regarding a potential fight but will now instead face his countryman Tennyson in his first defence.

The October 20th card, which will be headlined by a WBO middleweight title defence for Billy Joe Saunders, is heavy in terms of Irish representation with Wicklow lightweight Katie Taylor also featuring in a defence of her WBA and IBF belts versus Cindy Serrano, and Wexford heavyweight Niall Kennedy appearing in a major fight.

Also featuring on the bill will be Scott Quigg, Danny O’Connor, Tommy Coyle, Mark DeLuca, and an IBF featherweight eliminator between Kid Galahad and Toka Kahn Clary.

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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie