As British boxing booms, especially as four of the five heavyweight world titles have returned once more to our shores, it's important to support the rising stars of the future, so BBN asked UK promoters and managers to name their hottest prospects and the ones to watch out for in 2020.
“John Docherty (7-0, 5KOs) is one of the UK’s most exciting prospects – super-middleweight big puncher.
I would say that Joe Cordina (11-0, 7KOs) and Felix Cash (12-0, 8KOs) have both surpassed being a prospect and are on their way to being contenders, they are also champions in their own right as Cordina is the British and Commonwealth lightweight champ, and Cash being the Commonwealth middleweight champ. So, they are both champions, but some may say they are still prospects.
Qais Ashfaq (8-0, 3KOs), also having a solid year, picking up his first international title against Joe Ham. He should be one to watch for 2020.”
“Ben Hall (9-1-1, 2KOs) who is returning to the ring at 26-years-old after a three-year layoff since his defeat against Carson Jones.
Ben and I decided it’d be best if he had some time out and matured into his body and mind after suffering his only loss. He’s been back in the gym training hard and carrying power now that he’s matured.
Also, young Charlie Frankham (2-0, 1KO) is going to be one to watch.
He’s had to pull out of the December 19 Matchroom show due to injury, but I see him maturing in 2020 with his speed and power and shining on some big Matchroom cards along with Ben Hall in the new Season.”
“Ones to watch from my northern section would include Cameron Kaihau (3-0), Ryan Stevenson (7-0, 1KO) and Josh Padley (3-0).
From my southern section, down in Kent, it’d be my two newest debutants Brooklyn Tilly (1-0) and Jimmy Peckham (1-0). Both are very dedicated and part of a thriving gym at the Invicta in Sheerness, with top trainers Ray Askew and Sam Latham. They each won their debut fights in September in Maidstone and will be back there together again in February next year.
Boxing Connected are expanding to new areas next year, including Luton and Doncaster, and recruiting more talented prospects, so keep an eye out!”
“Our entire gym consists of young prospects, all amateur champions, with lots of potential. The talented list includes 22-year-old super-featherweight Nick Ball (11-0, 5KOs); Jonathan Walsh (3-0, 1KO); 21-year-old flyweight Connor Butler (3-0-1, 1KO); lightweight Michael Hedges (2-0); super-middleweight James Heneghan (3-0); super-welterweight Harry Woods (3-0); super-bantamweight Brad Strand (2-0, 1KO); Jack McKinlay (1-0); Andrew Cain (4-0, 4KOs).
All the lads will be next out on February 28 in Liverpool and are scheduled to fight five times next year, so they will all be closing in on championships by this time next year.”
“Excluding Daniel Dubois, we actually have four boxers that I think are all prospects: middleweight Denzel Bentley (11-0, 9KOs); cruiserweight James Branch Jr (6-0, 1KO); featherweight Louie Lynn (4-0, 4KOs); and super-bantamweight Chris Bourke (5-0, 4KOs).
I see all four of them on the same level at the moment and the New Year will tell who will go forward for championships.”
“My Welsh super-featherweight fighter Rhys Edwards (8-0, 3KO) is only 19 and already 8-0 with three stoppages.
He was a good junior and is trained by Gary Lockett. He is fast, heavy handed and a quick learner. Ithink he will be a British champion by the time he is 21.
Also, my 6ft 9” Romanian heavyweight Lucian Atana (3-0, 3KOs). Three fights, all stoppages, he is very fast for a heavyweight and hits hard.
He was a Romanian champion as an amateur and certainly looks the part.”
"I think my list of prospects have all got the ability and potential to win a British title, it's the best crop of talent I've ever had!
Heavyweight Ellis Machin (4-0-1, 3KOs), trained by Richard Wheldon.
Featherweight Brad Daws (6-0, 2KOs), trained by Chris Slatcher.
Welterweight Luke Fisher (5-0, 2KOs); super welterweight Stanley Stannard (2-0); and middleweight Tom Cowling (3-0, 1KO), all trained by me.
Welterweight Callum Blockley (6-0, 1KO), trained by Neil Tomlinson.
Super featherweight Levi Giles (8-0, 3KOs), trained by Matty Teague.
Flyweight Benn Norman (2-0), trained by Shaun Norman.
I'm looking forward to what the New Year brings for them all, so keep an eye out."
Dennis McCann (5-0, 4KOs) – This Maidstone ‘Menace’ has stopped four of his five victims within six months of action. The southpaw, trained by Alan smith and Eddie Lamm at the iBox Gym in Bromley, was a nine-time national amateur champion and, even though his opponents have all been the usual suspects, he really looks like the real deal already. He is definitely one of the most exciting prospects in British boxing right now and 2020 is expected to be a breakout year for the Kent man.
Dalton Smith (4-0, 3KOs) – Trained by his dad, Grant, out of the famous Steel City Gym in Sheffield, with Charlie and Sunny Edwards as his teammates, Dalton Smith is one of the most decorated amateurs of this century. With three stoppage wins from four fights, all within six short months, he is living up to his alias of ‘Thunder’ and he will be one to watch in 2020.