JE Promotions’ presents their stacked ‘Summer Showdown’ on July 7 at Mote Hall, Maidstone with an 11-fight card that will be the Kent-based boxing platform’s 11th event in the county.
Promoter Joe Elfidh, a former pro known as ‘The Moroccan Machine’, has lived up to his promise to bring big-time boxing back to Kent with his 11th show in three years, and is also single-handedly responsible for reigniting professional boxing in Maidstone for the first time since October 2000.
In the eighth event at the Maidstone venue, former Southern Area middleweight champion and English title contender Grant Dennis (10-1) headlines as he graces the square circle for the first time this year.
It was in December 2017 when the 34-year-old from Chatham last fought as he went into the away corner against Elliot Matthews (19-0-1) at the York Hall for the vacant English middleweight championship.
Matthews took the unanimous decision with scores of 96-95 and 97-94 twice, but Dennis cried robbery, stating that he was ‘was on the end of a bullsh*t boxing decision’, and immediately demanded the rematch, which hasn’t materialised.
Manager Joe Elfidh added, “Getting Grant out in a six-rounder to keep him busy, he may even fight a week before on our show in Worksop. We have been waiting for a phone call for the rematch and even from other managers for fights we’ve asked for, but all give false promises and nothing’s happened.”
Dave Jones (8-1-1) supplies heavyweight action on the night in his first fight back since his sole career defeat at the hands of South London sensation Daniel Dubois (7-0).
He was due to fight on the previous JE Promotions instalment, titled ‘Young Guns’, on May 12 but was forced to withdraw just one week before with a shoulder injury.
It’s been an entire year since the 36-year-old former soldier has had his arm raised in the ring following a draw and loss, respectively, in his previous two outings – an epic war with Welshman Dorian Darch (12-6-1) last October, resulting in a stalemate despite Jones suffering a career-first knockdown in the second-round; he then took heavyweight sensation Dubois into the third-round for the first time in the highly-touted prospects’ career, further than any other ‘DDD’ victim has managed to do, last February at the York Hall.
The ex-army boxing champion still has the Southern Area title in his sights and is also open to more big fights in the future.
Light-heavyweight Aidan Cassidy, 23 from Sittingbourne signed professional contracts with Joe Elfidh in January and makes his eagerly-awaited pro bow on the bumper ‘Summer Showdown’ show.
The Haringey Box Cup silver medallist trains out of the Kent Gloves Boxing Gym under the tutelage of Simon Gildea.
The talented youngster is taking his paid punching career one step at a time, stating, “First things first, I want to mark my professional debut with a good win, but, who knows, a Southern Area title would be nice!”
Sittingbourne’s Jack Raines (5-0) makes his second appearance under the JE Promotions banner after dealing with Hull’s Luke Fash (2-33-2) last February to claim his fifth shutout points win.
The 25-year-old, trained by John Cole in Longfield, won 40 of 50 amateur fights and plans to land a Challenge belt this year.
British Challenge super-middleweight champion Charlie Shane (6-0), 27 from Chatham, has switched camps to the Invicta Gym so will have Ray Askew and Sam Latham in his corner for the first time.
The unbeaten southpaw, known as ‘The Animal’, is a former unlicensed champion and has Cello Renda’s Southern Area super-middleweight title in his sights this year.
Lightweight Zeki Hussein (0-1) is back for the first time in four years. The Medway man made his debut on a Miranda Carter show at the York Hall back in April 2014 and lost on points to Barnsley southpaw Lee Gibbons (1-2), who fought Ohara Davies two fights later.
Zeki now has a new team at the Invicta Gym with Ray Askew and Joe Elfidh guding his career, he has a renewed ambition and gets back in a four-rounder with opponent yet to be confirmed.
Maidstone’s Chris Matthews (9-1) bounced back from February’s defeat to Jules Phillips (2-17) with a win 40-37 points win against a very ambitious opponent in Michael Horabin (0-2) on May 12.
This will be JE Promotions’ 11th event in Kent and the busy 23-year-old has competed on every single one of those shows.
His 11th pro bout will be a special occasion for the super-featherweight as he shares the card with his younger brother for the first time in the pro circuit.
Debutant Dave Matthews follows his older brother into the paid ranks and makes his pro bow at super-middleweight but plans to campaign at middleweight thereafter.
Future star Lenny Fuller (1-0), trained by Lee Page at Combat Sports Academy, gets back out in another four-rounder after dazzling the crowds on his debut in May.
‘The Main Man’, 23 from Chart Sutton, scored a second-round knockdown en route to a landslide points win against Hyde’s Dale Arrowsmith (1-15-1), and looked cool and composed in doing so.
The former unlicensed champion, who also had a limited amateur career with Westry ABC, has plans to fight as often as possible with firm ambitions to become a British champion.
Welterweight Danny Barrett (1-0), 25 from Stoke in Kent, also kicked off his pro career with a one-sided victory on the same night as Fuller, defeating 38-year-old Slovakian Rudolf Durica (1-20).
The southpaw, a former Haringey Box Cup champion, managed to deal with his tricky opponent, a former kick-boxing champion, to win all four-rounds.
Former ABA champion Jack Budge (2-0), 23 from High Halstow in Kent, doubled his win tally in his first appearance under the JE Promotions banner against Luke Fash (2-38-2), in February and gets back under the lights for his second appearance under the JE Promotions banner.
Originally signed with Sanigar Promotions when working as an apprentice jockey in Lambourn, the former ABA and Three Nations champion has sparred many rounds with British flyweight champion Andrew Selby and Commonwealth super-bantamweight champ Ashley Lane.
Promoter Joe Elfidh concluded, “The shows have built up over the years to a great success and are a sell-out every time. We are attracting more and more talented fighters, and on this show alone we’ve got a Southern Area champion, a Southern Area heavyweight title contender, a British Challenge belt winner, three top amateur champions in Barrett, Raines and Budge, and Fuller is one to watch as well!”