Matchroom promote at the Ulster Hall in Belfast this Saturday evening, and the highly-touted home fighter, Lewis Crocker headlines against the experienced Jose Felix for the vacant WBO Intercontinental welterweight title over a scheduled ten rounds.
DAZN televise Crocker vs Felix live worldwide.
Crocker (18-0, 10 KOs) had been steadily climbing the ladder in the sport, serving as WBO European champion in 2020 and 2021, before a series of injury and opponent withdrawal setbacks kept him out of the ring for 17 months.
‘The Croc’ kept busy upon his return, fighting four times in 2023, stepping up in class before meeting Tyrone McKenna in an all-Belfast clash in December.
The 27-year-old turned in a mature performance to win all ten rounds on two cards, in a wide points win, and he will look to make inroads at world level in 2024.
He faces a man with a wealth of experience in Felix (40-6-1, 31 KOs), who began his career at super featherweight, and boxes at welterweight for the first time this weekend.
The Mexican lost back-to back decisions to the aforementioned McKenna and Sandor Martin in 2021 and 2022, but then travelled to Dublin in May last year and stunned Gary Cully, scoring a ruthless third round stoppage in their lightweight meeting.
The 31-year-old will look to cause another upset in Belfast.
Prediction: The weight difference should prove the difference in this one, as Crocker is a big welterweight, and Felix has barely fought past the lightweight limit. I think Crocker can wear down the visitor after halfway.
Clarke meets McCarthy
The vacant WBA Intercontinental cruiserweight title is up for grabs, as Cheavon Clarke and Tommy McCarthy meet in a crossroads clash.
2020 Olympian, Clarke (7-0, 5 KOs) has gradually stepped up in class in his each of his seven professional fights, and his last saw him claim the IBF International trinket with a clear points win against Vasil Ducar.
McCarthy (20-5, 10 KOs) is a former European champion, before losing that belt in back-to-back defeats to Chris Billam-Smith, and his last contest saw him challenge for that title once more, but he was stopped in seven in a one-sided defeat in Poland to Michal Cieslak.
Prediction: I think Clarke will be too fresh for the home fighter, and he can win via stoppage in the later rounds.
Paddy Donovan boxed three times in 2023, stopping Danny Ball in four in his most recent outing in November, and he has another scheduled ten rounder here.
Prediction: Donovan (12-0, 9 KOs) may need to complete the distance for the first time in victory against Argentina’s Williams Andres Herrera (15-2, 6 KOs) at welterweight.
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The final ten rounder also comes at welterweight, where Conah Walker (12-2-1, 4 KOs), who comes off an upset eighth round stoppage win against Cyrus Pattinson last August, can take a win on the cards against unbeaten Welshman, Lloyd Germain (9-0, 1 KO).
In the sole six rounder on the card, Giorgio Visioli (1-0, 1 KO) can halt Samiel Pikire (4-2) at lightweight, and in the only four round affair, Emmanuel Buttigieg (1-0, 1 KO) may need the distance to win against Estonia’s Artjom Spatar (4-4, 1 KO) at middleweight.