Boxing seems to be in a really healthy position at the moment, and you may have heard I’ve recently formed an alliance with MTK Global, who are making huge strides in the game. They’re a relatively new organisation compared to the old guard of Frank Warren and the Hearns, but they’re trying to do things the right way, and have got some big names under their banner, including Tyson Fury. I’ve been talking to them for a while, and if I can help with any of their fighters or shows, I will. I’ll put their fighters on my shows, and vice versa. Obviously, I still do my own thing, but we’ve got an agreement where we’ll work together. If they want help putting Yorkshire shows on, or anywhere in the world, then I’ll help. I get on very well with them, they’re honourable people and I see how big they can potentially be, and not just in this country.
Sometimes, the promoters of old have wanted boxing to be a closed shop, and haven’t wanted to work with others. They’ve even signed fighters so they can’t work with other promoters, and then kept them on the shelf and inactive. There’s been a lot of politics in boxing, but MTK are in a position where they can work with anyone. I think that’s the way forward, everyone gets a piece of the pie, promoters working together to make boxing a bigger sport than it is. I’m really looking forward to building some champions together with them.
Boxing’s on a high, and Anthony Joshua’s next two fights will be at Wembley Stadium. There’s also plenty of boxing on the TV too, but I still think it’s a disgrace the BBC aren’t showing the sport. My shows with David Haye, and when we had Clinton Woods winning the world title, were the last professional shows on the channel, and that was years ago. We got really good viewing figures then, but just because whoever is at the BBC helm now doesn’t fancy boxing, they don’t show it. They use public money to cover Olympic boxing where we’ve won medals, but when those fighters turn pro they don’t carry on following their journeys. England have just been knocked out of the World Cup, but boxing is one of the only sports we actually win at on the world stage. In my opinion, the BBC as the public broadcaster should be supporting boxing. I feel really strongly about, it; it’s totally wrong.
As well as MTK, I’ve also got a great relationship with Phil Jeffries, Neil Fannan and Dave Garside, up in the Northeast. They’re producing some great fighters up there. Obviously, Lewis Ritson and Glenn Foot are on a high, but they’ve also got other fighters like County Durham’s Thomas Ward and his brother Martin, who I helped to get a world title shot a few years ago.
My next show is in the Northeast on July 27th, and it’s live on Freesports. We’ve got Martin Ward topping the bill at the Rainton Meadows Arena against Liverpool’s Jazza Dickens for the British Super Bantamweight belt. And Tommy Ward is also in an IBF European Super Bantamweight Title fight, which will move him up the rankings if he comes through. Martin and Jazza have actually fought before in 2015; it was a great fight that night, and I know it will be this time around too.
Sometimes in the Northeast, they haven’t had the opportunities they should have with TV shows. But we’ve now got this Freesports platform where we’re going to showcase the likes of Tommy Ward who, mark my words, has every chance of winning a world title. The shows we’ve already delivered on Freesports have been top quality and for meaningful titles too, and you just can’t knock it. I’m a boxing fan, and it’s been brilliant entertainment. I keep saying how it’s value for money, but you don’t even have to pay! With boxing on the other channels there’s some kind of subscription, but with us it’s completely free and you can tune in from anywhere if you have a TV. It’s pretty unique what we’re doing on the boxing scene at the moment in this country, and long may it continue.
Dennis Hobson Promotions, in association with Phil Jeffries and Dave Garside and sponsored by Steve Crump, presents Martin Ward and James Dickens contesting the vacant British Super Bantamweight Title, and Thomas Ward fighting Alvaro Rodrigues for the IBF European Super Bantamweight Title, at the Rainton Meadows Arena on July 27.
The show will be broadcast live on Freesports
For ticket information contact 07747 611 020.