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Tennyson tipped for British title joy against lightweight rival Gwynne



Power play: James Tennyson will bid for title delight in Eddie Hearn’s garden

Power play: James Tennyson will bid for title delight in Eddie Hearn’s garden

Sportsfile via Getty Images

Katie Taylor

Katie Taylor

Sportsfile via Getty Images

Power play: James Tennyson will bid for title delight in Eddie Hearn’s garden

James Tennyson is ready to grab his golden opportunity on August 1 when he challenges for the vacant British lightweight title in promoter Eddie Hearn's back garden.

Hard-hitting Belfast man Tennyson has been chosen to be part of Hearn's series of four shows on Sky Sports which, due to the coronavirus pandemic, will all be staged in the grounds of his mansion which is also the headquarters of Matchroom Sports.

The former world super-featherweight title challenger will tangle with Welshman Gavin Gwynne for the British lightweight belt.

Despite the lockdown, Tennyson has been working hard at home and coach Tony Dunlop has no doubt he will be ready to overcome the challenge of Gwynne.

"James is a real natural fighting man, he just loves to fight and I know he will be ready to deal with Gwynne, who is a very tough man. Just like any James Tennyson fight, it could be a fight of the year contender," said Belfast coach Dunlop.

"At this stage of his career I think this is the ideal fight for James, it will be a good learning fight. Gwynne likes to come forward just like James, whose power will be the difference. I can see him winning by a late stoppage.

"Winning the British title could then lead to a European title shot and I think that would be ideal for James. Finland's Edis Tatli is fighting for the vacant European title in August and he's a guy I would love to see James face."

Dunlop added that he has no concern about Tennyson rising to the occasion with no supporters at ringside, even comparing the experience to a contest he had as an amateur.

"I boxed for Ireland in Italy back in 1981 and it was held in a TV studio with no fans, just the TV people and coaches. It was strange but once the bell went it didn't matter a thing and it'll be the same for Tennyson. He's got a job to do and that's all he'll be focused on," said Dunlop.

Women's world lightweight champion Katie Taylor will be on the undercard of the final Matchroom bill which is being headlined by the heavyweight scrap between Dillian Whyte and Russian Alexander Povetkin on August 22.

"We've of course got Madison Square Garden, this is Matchroom Square Garden," said Hearn. "We've been working diligently with the British Boxing Board of Control for the last three months. We're in a position where we know the procedures that have to take place to make the sport safe to return.

"We feel like we've done it at the right time, we feel like everything's safe. We've got a brilliant schedule of fights lined up and we can't wait to bring boxing back to your screens.

"We have no crowd, we don't have the 80,000 singing 'Sweet Caroline' and have the energy of the audience but what we do have is the beauty of boxing, the rawness of the sport. We need to make sure those fights are compelling."

Belfast Telegraph