With not much to look forward to at the moment, BBN decided to look back on the year in boxing so far.
All of the British boxing highlights of 2020 have been condensed into one summarised list below:
Welcome to the Team
Jan 5: Frank Warren signs Olympian Muhammad Ali. The decorated amateur won silver at the 2014 AIBA World Championships, losing out American Shakur Stevenson in the final, who is now a World champion.
Tornado leaves Cyclone
Jan 9: Josh Taylor’s acrimonious split with Cyclone Promotions was one of the first talking points of the year. The unified super-lightweight champion signed a multi-year promotional pact with Top Rank and advisory contract with MTK Global, seemingly behind the McGuigan’s backs, although 'The Tartan Tornado' claims there were several breaches of contract that led him to terminate the agreement with them and that he had hoped for a amicable parting. Just a few days later, his next opponent was announced as IBF #1 Apinun Khongsong.
Spike stopped in the States
Jan 11: Brave Irishman Gary 'Spike' O'Sullivan (30-4) is stopped by Mexican Jaime Munguia (35-0) in the 11th round of their middleweight meeting in Texas.
England vs Ireland
Jan 17: Scott Quigg vs Jono Carrol super-featherweight clash announced, with Manchester Arena on March 7 confirmed as the date and venue.
First title fight of 2020
Jan 20: Deion Jumah defeated Sam Hyde to retain his English cruiserweight title on an M22 Promotions event in Wythenshawe. It was a compelling 12-round contest, with unbeaten Jumah (13-0) just edging the home fighter Hyde (15-2-1) by 115-113 twice and 115-114.
Jan 21: Belfast powerhouse James Tennyson (26-3) signs with Matchroom Boxing following a six-fight win streak. The Northern Irish lightweight, who has won seven titles across three weights, signed a multi-fight deal wtih Eddie Hearn as he targets the British belt.
The Irish Golden Boy
Jan 23: Irish contender Jason Quigley (18-1) stopped Fernando Marin in three rounds in California on a Golden Boy Promotions event.
A Boo Boo in Miami
Jan 30: Demetrius Andrade (29-0) defeated Irishman Luke Keeler (17-3-1) in Miami via ninth-round TKO to retain his WBO middleweight title. The WBO #3 from Dublin was down in the very first round but dominated throughout despite his spirited effort.
Feb 1: Former IBF bantamweight world champion Lee Haskins (36-5) was sent into retirement by David Oliver Joyce (12-1) with a fifth-round TKO. Rio 2016 Olympian Joyce won the WBO European super-bantamweight title, previously holding the featherweight version.
Frank Warren signs Liverpool trio
Feb 4: Unbeaten super-featherweight Nick Ball (12-0), super-bantamweight Bradley Strand (3-0) and featherweight Andrew Cain (5-0) from the thriving Everton Red Triangle gym all signed promotional contracts with the Hall of Fame promoter. Trained by Paul Stevenson, there’s seven unbeaten pros in the thriving gym, all of them amateur champions with extensive pedigrees.
Feb 6: Sam Eggington is added to the Shakan Pitters vs Craig Richards British light-heavyweight title event in Coventry, to be televised live on Channel 5.
Seek and Destroy
Feb 7: The British heavyweight title fight between unbeaten powerhouses Daniel Dubois and Joe Joyce was finally announced, with the pair having to be pulled apart when young Dubois shoved the older ‘Juggernaut’.
Feb 8: Scotland’s Hannah Rankin (9-4) won her first fight back since her IBO World super-welterweight title defeat last November.
Brook is back!
Feb 8: Kell Brook (39-2) returned from a 14-mojnth break to beat American Mark DeLuca (24-2) in seven rounds in Sheffield. 'Special K' immediatey called for a fight with Liam Smith afterwards.
Terri Harper was crowned WBC super-featherweight chamion on the same show with a 10-round points decision over Eva Wahlstrom.
'Ava' vs 'PBK'
Feb 9: Former world champion David Avanesyan (26-3-1) will defend his European welterweight title to Josh Kelly (10-0-1) at The O2 on March 28, live on Sky Sports.
Feb 11: Announcent is made that 'The Sandman' Lewis Ritson will clash with former long-reigning IBF world champion Miguel Vazquez on April 4 in Newcastle.
Warrington goes full circle
Feb 12: Josh Warrington re-signed for Matchroom despite winning his world title under Frank Warren’s promotional banner and guidance. The ‘Leeds Warrior’ his hunting for a world featherweight unification fight in 2020.
Feb 13: Super-featherweight Alex Dilmaghani, signed to Hennessy Sports, lands European title shot against Samir Ziani.
Feb 13: Cruiserweight contender Isaac Chamberlain signs with Mick Hennessy.
Feb 13: Ultimate Boxxer 7 super-middleweight line-up announced: Sebastian Eubank (2-0); Mark Jeffers (11-0); Idris Virgo (5-0-1); Diego Costa (7-0); Luke Blackledge (26-9-2); Tommy Philbin (13-1); Charlie Schofield (15-1); Ben Ridings (3-0).
Feb 13: Unbeaten welterweight Darren Tetley signs with MTK Global.
Feb 14: Johnny Garton gets a rematch with British welterweight champion Chris Jenkins confirmed.
Feb 14: Team GB starlet Ellie Scotney signs with Matchroom Boxing.
Feb 14: The BBBofC announce Frank Warren’s rising super-bantamweight star Shabaz Masoud is mandated to fight for Michael Ramabeletsa’s English title.
Feb 17: Cruiserweight contender Jack Massey signs contract extension with Frank Warren.
Feb 19: Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury arrive at the MGM Grand to kick off fight week.
First Golden Contract finalists confirmed
Feb 21: Ohara Davies (21-2) and Tyrone McKenna (21-1-1) booked their places in the Golden Contract super-lightweight final. ‘OD’ sizzled in a sixth-round stoppage over the spirited Jeff Ofori (10-2-1), who gave it his all, but McKenna’s close points win over Mohamed Mimoune (22-4) was disputed by all who watched it.
Ryan Walsh (26-2-2) and Jazza Dickens (29-3) will meet in the featherweight finals in what could be one of the best 126lbs match-ups in modern times.
Feb 21: Boxing Connected broke new ground when they staged their first event in Doncaster, which saw all three home fighters continue their unbeaten streaks in a sold-out show at the Holiday Inn – Josh Padley (4-0); Cameron Kaihau (4-0); Ryan Stevenson (8-0).
No revenge for Reid
Feb 22: Brad Foster made no mistake in his rematch with Lucien Reid as he beat him to every punch to retain his British super-bantamweight belt with a sixth-round stoppage win.
Dennis ‘The Menace’ McCann moved up to 6-0 on the undercard and called out Prince Patel immediately after.
The Gypsy King is crowned once again
Feb 23: In the early hours of Sunday morning, Tyson Fury (30-0-1) was in seventh heaven as the green and gold belt of the WBC was presented to him following an emphatic seven-round demolition of the previously unbeaten Deontay Wilder (42-1-1), considered to be the most fearsome puncher in the world.
Isaac Lowe (20-0-3) won on the undercard, retaining his WBC International featherweight strap with a UD victory.
Feb 24: Tommy Frank (13-0) lands IBO World flyweight title shot against champion Maximino Flores (29-4).
Feb 27: Team GB sensation Jordan Reynolds turns professional with MTK Global.
Feb 28: Black Flash Promotions’ February 28 event at the Grand Central Hall in Liverpool saw 13 undefeated prospects take to the ring, with all home fighters keeping their perfect records intact.
Everton Red Triangle Gym prospects, all trained by Paul Stevenson, Jack McKinlay (2-0); Jonathan Walsh (4-0); Harry Woods (4-0); Connor Butler (4-01); Bradley Strand (3-0); Andrew Cain (5-0); Nick Ball (12-0) all won their fights, as did Carly Skelly (3-0), who is managed by Paul Stevenson but trains at North Mersey ABC.
Junior Thompson (2-0); James Heneghan (4-0); Karl Tierney (2-0) and Commonwealth super-welterweight champion JJ Metcalf (21-0) all won, but Michael Hedges (2-0-1) had to settle for a draw.
‘Back with a Bang’
Feb 29: Boxing Connected’s ‘Back with a Bang’ show lit up the Mote Park arena in Maidstone on the quadrennial date. Debutant Kieran Spice (1-0); Margate’s Paul ‘Bomber’ Brown (5-0); Sidcup’s Martin Hillman (14-6); super-middleweight Charlie Shane (9-0); teenager Brooklyn Tilley (2-0); Londoner Chris ‘The Spartan’ Davies (14-0); former Southern Area titlist Grant Dennis (14-2); and Prizefighter finalist Lenny Fuller (10-1) all progressed forwards with points victories.
Britain’s longest-reigning world champion dethroned
Mar 9: Kal Yafai lost his WBA super-flyweight title to four-weight world ruler Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez in Texas. The Birmingham man was outclassed in a punishing battle that was ended with a straight one-two down the pipe in the ninth-round.
Welshman Jay Harris (17-1) was also defeated on the same event in a brave challenge at hard-hitting WBC World flyweight champion Julio Cesar Martinez (16-1) over 12-rounds.
A Cobra in London
March 2: Anthony Joshua vs Kubrat Pulev agree terms to fight on June 20 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
‘The Beast’ and ‘The Body Snatcher’ are back!
March 3: Dillian Whyte’s interim WBC world heavyweight title defence against Alexander Povetkin announced for May 2. On the same day, world title contender Anthony Yarde’s clash with Lyndon Arthur is confirmed.
Like father, like son
Mar 4: South Londoner Sammy Cantwell (7-1-1) aims to emulate his champion father Mickey as he lands his first title shot – Southern Area super-flyweight shot at champion Ricky Little (5-2-1) on April 25.
Mar 4: Terri Harper’s (10-0) maiden WBC World title defence is confirmed in her hometown in Doncaster for April 24 against Natasha Jonas (9-1).
Mar 6: Billy Joe Saunders’ shot at Canelo is reported to have been finalised for May 2 in Las Vegas.
Irish legend in seventh heaven
Mar 6: Irish legend and undisputed lightweight world ruler Katie Taylor’s (15-0) next fight is confirmed for May 2 at the Manchester Arena against seven-weight world champion Amanda Serrano (38-1-1).
Danny can dig some!
Mar 6: Danny Dignum retained his WBO European middleweight title with a ninth-round TKO over Alfredo Meli at the Brentwood Centre in Essex.
‘King Kong’ conquers Quigg
Jono Carroll produced a career-best performance against a fallen former world champion, Scott Quigg, who announced his retirement shortly after losing in the 11th round to the Dubliner.
Hughie Fury bounced back from his defeat to Alexander Povetkin last August by stopping Pavel Sour in three to revive his world title hopes.
Anthony Fowler had an easy win against Theophilus Tettah who was dropped three times in the first round to set up a rematch with rival Scott Fitzgerald later this year.
Derby’s Zach Parker defeated Rohan Murdock with a left hook in the 11th round to win the WBO International super-middleweight title and edge closer to a mandated shot at WBO champ Billy Joe Saunders.
Mar 7: Kay Prospere (14-1-1) defended his English super-lightweight title successfully against Bilal Rehman (13-2) with a 10-round UD victory on Boxing Connected’s Dunstable show.
‘Lightning’ strikes again
Mar 7: Lee Selby (28-2) will take on undefeated George Kambosos Jr (18-0) in a final eliminator for the IBF World lightweight title in Cardiff on May 9 on a Matchroom Boxing event.
Mar 7: Irish welterweight sensation Rohan Date (12-0-1) defeated Rivo Kundimang by fourth-round stoppage in Dubai, making it his ninth KO win.
Mar 10: Respected trainer Adam Booth recruits German super-welterweight star Abass Barao to his stable.
Mar 10: Eight-time national champion Karol Itauma from Chatham, Kent, turns professional with Frank Warren.
Mar 11: Oleksandr Usyk vs Dereck Chisora heavyweight clash confirmed for May 23 at The O2, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Mar 13: Frank Warren signs British super-featherweight champion Anthony Cacace.
No St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in the Garden
Mar 13: Michael Conlan’s (13-0) St. Patrick’s Day Garden party at Madison Square Garden in New York is postponed. The unbeaten featherweight sensation from Ireland was due to face Belmar Preciado (20-2-1) in a 10-rounder.
Mar 15: Tyson Fury is the subject of another controversy as a Lancashire farmer sells his story to a national newspaper, claiming he was promised money to cover up a doping conspiracy back in 2015. Frank Warren immediately rubbished allegations as outrageous and encouraged everyone not to take the accuser seriously.
Gone in a ‘Flash’
Mar 16: Commonwealth super-featherweight champion Zelfa ‘Brown Flash’ Barrett switched from Queensberry Promotions to Matchroom Boxing, with a view to debut on the Usyk-Chisora undercard on May 2.
Mar 17: Dennis Hobson Promotions, Hennessy Sports, MTK Global, Boxing Connected, Matchroom Boxing and Queensberry Promotions all announce events for March and April officially cancelled until further notice after the orders came from the British Boxing Board of Control.
‘The Jackal’ attempts to make island history
Mar 19: Two-weight world champion Carl Frampton (27-2) could make history if he can defeat WBO World super-featherweight champion Jamel Herring (21-2) when they clash in Belfast later this year. If the Tiger Bay star prevails, then he would be Northern Ireland’s first ever ‘Triple Champion’ in history.
Mar 19: Eddie Hearn provides update on Joshua-Pulev, confirming that the event is still on for June 20, but an alternate date in July is available should the date be forced back. The promoter also provided an update on Saunders-Canelo that the fight will be moved to the summer instead.
Mar 19: Jamie Conlan appointed Vice President of MTK Global.