For many years, the cream of the crop of British talent have been signed to Matchroom and Queensbury. Since the formers move to DAZN, BOXXER have filled the slot on Sky Sports and are developing a fine British stable themselves. Who has the best band of UK fighters though? We take a look at each of the big 3’s British roster.
For the last decade it is hard to argue against Matchroom’s dominance of boxing in this country. They have propelled the likes of Anthony Joshua, Lawrence Okolie, Kell Brook, Tony Bellew, Carl Froch and Dillian Whyte. The list of World Champions they have had over the years has been nothing short of sensational.
In 2023 though it’s a stable with very few British World Champions though, only 2 infact! These are Leigh Wood (WBA Feather) and Chantelle Cameron (Undisputed Super Light).
Eddie Hearn is still not short of British talent in his arsenal though with AJ, Whyte, Callum Smith, Conor Benn, Craig Richards, Ellie Scotney, Joshua Buatsi and John Ryder all still under contract.
Matchroom’s focus, since the move to DAZN, has been more of a global one which has possibly contributed to the amount of British fighters that hold a World title within their stable. With that being said it looks like Callum Smith is in line for another World title shot and Joe Cordina will no doubt come back for the title he was so harshly stripped of due to injury.
With recent signings, Olympian Pat McCormack and Team GB Podium member Mark Dickinson as well as beating BOXXER to re-sign Dalton Smith, Matchroom are still very well placed in this country with their group of fighters.
Frank Warren’s Queensbury promotions have had a real resurgence to the British market in recent years, especially since they moved to BT Sports. Once famed for having the biggest names in British boxing, including Lennox Lewis, Joe Calzaghe and Amir Khan, they did fall away for a little bit. They are in full force these day’s though with the likes of WBC World Heavyweight Champion Tyson Fury in their team.
Queensbury boast a real wealth of British Heavyweights with not only The Gypsy King but also Joe Joyce, Daniel Dubois and David Adeleye. They have also recently signed the hottest prospect in the UK Heavyweight scene, 18 year old Moses Itauma.
In contrast to Matchroom, Queensbury have always prioritised their roots which are on these shores and continue to do so. An impressive roster of fighters include Zach Parker, Nick Ball, Denzel Bentley, Ekow Essuman and of course Anthony Yarde.
On the back of an extremely successful 2022, Queensbury look to go from strength to strength in 2023. Especially with the involvement of the likely Undisputed Heavyweight World title bout between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk.
Ben Shalom’s BOXXER are the new kids on the block so to speak. Since their incarnation as Ultimate Boxxer in 2018, the outfit turned a few heads when they signed a four-year deal with Sky Sports in 2021. Since then they have put on some great cards and have begun to build a solid profile of British fighters themselves.
Having had fight nights like Amir Khan vs Kell Brook, Josh Taylor vs Jack Catterall, Claressa Shields vs Savannah Marshall and most recently Liam Smith vs Chris Eubank Jr, it’s safe to say Boxxer are doing their bit to fill the void left on Sky Sports by Matchroom.
It seems to be the worst kept secret in boxing that WBO World Cruiserweight Champion Lawrence Okolie is Boxxer bound and Sky Sports want him to be the face of their platform. He will face competition though from fellow Cruiserweight, also signed to Boxxer, Richard Riakporhe though as he is calling for an all British clash.
You also only need to look at what Ben Shalom has delivered for Natasha Jonas in the last 12 months too to know that they mean business and keep to their promises with fighters. This seems to be creating a draw for British talent.
Boxxer also seem to be putting a lot of effort into building the profile of hot prospect Adam Azim who is already headlining shows. He is tipped by many to take the Light-Welterweight division by storm. Azim is also joined by fellow risen star Ben Whittaker who is also tipped for great things.
By Lee Browne