LEEDS boxer Josh Warrington seeks to enter the world stage in front of 10,000 fans at the First Direct Arena on Saturday and promoter Eddie Hearn is warning: “we’re only just getting started.”
European, Commonwealth and British featherweight champion Warrington is now part of Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing stable and takes on Dennis Tubieron in an official eliminator for the WBC world featherweight title on Saturday evening.
An excited 10,000 fans will pack into the First Direct Arena but Hearn believes Warrington could box in front of quadruple that number at Elland Road in future years for a world title shot.
Warrington was recruited to Hearn’s Essex-based Matchroom Boxing stable last year after defeating Rendall Munroe in Manchester, a fight which was followed by back to back victories at First Direct Arena against Martin Lindsay and Davide Dieli.
Victory in the latter sealed Warrington the European featherweight title but Hearn was world domination on his mind in front of the biggest sporting arena of all in Leeds.
Hearn told the
“It’s been a whirlwind ride already but we’re only just getting started and 100 per cent Elland Road has to happen.
“If he keeps progressing like he is then Elland Road is an absolute given.
“If we are selling 10,000 for Denis Tubieron which is a world title eliminator but a fight that Josh should win, what we are going to do when we get a world title shot?
“He’ll do 30 or 40 thousand at Elland Road and it’s just very unusual for a fighter these days to captivate the city and attract the following that he does.”
Warrington will put the final touches to his preparations this afternoon at the official weigh-in at the Light in Leeds where he will be joined by former Leeds United favourite Vinnie Jones who will accompany the boxer for tomorrow evening’s ring walk.
And passionate United supporter Warrington is hoping 10,000 fans will raise the roof at Leeds Arena.
A large section of Warrington’s followers share his passion for the Whites who are also in action in Leeds on Saturday at home to Championship visitors Cardiff with a 3pm kick-off.
Warrington will then take to the stage around seven hours later, backed by a partisan crowd who he hopes will be even louder than normal as the 24-year-old looks to enter boxing’s world stage.
“There’s a lot said about the fans and they are amazing,” said Warrington at yesterday’s press conference at Leeds City Museum.
“You’ll be in the spotlight live on Sky, so make plenty of noise!
“I have to pinch myself when I walk out in front of the fans.
“Leeds people get behind their own, I just try my best for them.
“This is the door to getting on the world stage. I have to show that I belong there, and that will take a great performance.
“Let’s see what Dennis brings on Saturday, it could be a chess match or a war, but we have several game plans.”
Warrington is as short as 1-100 favourite to win the fight with some bookmakers.