How Sheffield boxer had a hand in Leeds' champion Josh Warrington's historic win

Josh Warrington celebrates at Elland Road,Josh Warrington celebrates at Elland Road,
Josh Warrington celebrates at Elland Road,
Leeds' new world champion Josh Warrington's family have hailed the help their fighter received from Sheffield sparring partner Atif Shafiq.

The lightweight sparred 50 rounds with Warrington in the build-up to Saturday’s IBF victory over featherweight Lee Selby at Elland Road.

The 24-year-old Ingle man played a part in the “perfect preparation” the West Yorkshireman enjoyed before making history - he’s the first boxer from Leeds to win a world title.

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Shafiq’s trainer Dom Ingle congratulated Warrington into “dragging Selby into his (style of) fight” saying the battle reminded him of Ricky Hatton v Kostya Tsyzu in 2005.

Ingle said: “Warrington’s team used their brains. Selby is a mover, is awkward, good footwork..and Atif is the same.

“I think Atif said he did 50 rounds with Josh.

“Josh’s dad rang Atif up after and said: ‘Thanks for everything.’ They are over the moon, everything paid off - that’s fair play.”

Meanwhile, another Ingle campaigner, Kid Galahad has stated his case for a Yorkshire derby with Warrington and has questioned the fairness of some of Warrington’s tactics.

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Atif Shafiq: Picture by Lawrence LustigAtif Shafiq: Picture by Lawrence Lustig
Atif Shafiq: Picture by Lawrence Lustig

On twitter, he said he thought that Selby had been unlucky and told the Welshman: “a fair bit of foul play and wasn’t your night.”

Then Galahad (Abdul Barry Awad) taunted Warrington posting: “The time is ticking so see you soon. #YorkshireDerby.”

Warrington eventually sees Belfast’s Carl Frampton as a bigger match-up - but in the meantime a Yorkshire duel would certainly be attractive in the region.

The unbeaten pair have similar records, Warrington is W27 L0, while the Sheffielder, who has stopped his last six opponents, is W24 L0.

*Kell Brook’s next fight could be on July 28 - the former world champion says that is the month he’ll e out next.