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Newark's Chad Sugden to take on Shakan Pitters in behind-closed-doors title fight live on Channel 5




The bout between Chad Sugden and Shakan Pitters for the vacant British light-heavyweight title is back on, but this time behind closed doors.

Newark warrior Sugden (11-1-1, 4 KO’s) was supposed to take on the undefeated Pitters (13-0-0, 4 KO’s) at the Coventry Skydome in March, but lockdown saw the cancellation of the event.

Chad Sugden, of Newark, says he’ll break Shakan Pitters (left) in half with body shots when they clash on Saturday, March 28. (30927297)
Chad Sugden, of Newark, says he’ll break Shakan Pitters (left) in half with body shots when they clash on Saturday, March 28. (30927297)

However, after guidance from the British Boxing Board of Control, the title fight will now go ahead on Saturday, August 22.

Head coach at Suggy’s Gym, Dean Sugden said: “We are buzzing. We are ecstatic that the fight is going ahead.

“We always felt it would because of the daily indication from Hennessy Sports (the promoters) since we went into lockdown.

Chad Sugden. Credit: Rick Wilks (32285433)
Chad Sugden. Credit: Rick Wilks (32285433)

“The only question was would Channel 5 go forward with the show behind closed doors because Chad is a massive ticket seller.”

The fight will be aired on Channel 5, as originally planned, though a venue is yet to be confirmed.

Both coach Dean and fighter Chad said that fighting without a crowd would not change their approach.

Chad said: “I don’t think it will make a difference once I’m in there.

“Obviously with the ring entrance, and being in the venue the atmosphere will be different, but other than that I don’t think so.

“When you get in there and the shots start firing you shut off the crowd and focus.”

Dean said: “Chad has the opportunity to promote boxing in quite a big way really, and it makes it even more interesting that they have decided to go head-to-head with a Sky Sports pay-per-view show (referencing the Dillian Whyte vs Alexander Povetkin card, which is live on Sky Sports Box Office the same evening).

“I think we will do very well because ordinarily the audience on Channel 5 is huge, and we are excited to be on one of the first few TV shows that is bringing boxing back.”

With eight weeks left until fight night, Dean revealed he had a phone call asking if Chad could get himself ready for August.

“We had the phone call and we were lucky that Chad lives at home, so we could continue to train with each other.

“A lot of boxers haven’t had that privilege, unless they have been locked in with their coach, so it is a rare advantage and scenario for us.

“From that point of view, when we got the call, we started what we would class as a proper camp.”

On Tuesday, Sugden visited a Joe Gallagher gym to spar with Hosea Burton to up the levels in camp.

“He’s 25-1 and we believe he is a more improved version of Shakan,” said Dean.

“He is similar stylistically and similar in terms of stature, but he is a better boxer and a harder hitter and when we are trying to replicate our opponents style and strengths, Hosea is the perfect sparring partner.”


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