Batley boxer Josh Hargreaves aims for British title after professional contract with Frank Warren and Queensberry Promotions

BATLEY BOXER Josh Hargreaves is aiming to become British champion after signing a professional contract with Frank Warren and Queensberry Promotions.

Saturday, 27th March 2021, 6:00 am
PRO DEAL: For Batley boxer Josh Hargreaves.
PRO DEAL: For Batley boxer Josh Hargreaves.

The 26-year-old won National Senior Development titles at under-60kg in 2018 and 2019, and was victorious in 15 of his 16 senior amateur bouts.

Hargreaves believes that British title success could propel him to greater things in the sport but he never imagined he would be on the books of one of the top promoters in the country.

The Batley fighter started boxing aged nine before quitting five years later. He returned as a 20-year-old but never expected to turn professional.

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COACH: Josh Hargreaves with one of his coaches, Mo Patel.

“If I didn’t think I had what it takes, I wouldn’t do it,” he said.

“I want to win the British title. I am British and I want to win that prestigious British belt.

“That is my first aim in the sport.

“If you win that, then you can go onto much better things.

“That level is where I want to get. I think I have got a chance.”

He continued: “I don’t think it has sunk in yet. I didn’t expect to go professional when I started boxing, I just did for fun.

“I am better than what I thought I was and have been able to turn professional with one of the best promoters in the sport.

“It is crazy really. I am happy with it. I just thought I might turn professional and have a few fights but I have got this deal with Queensbury and Frank Warren and I am really happy with it.”

Hargreaves will fight at featherweight, the same weight class as former IBF champion Josh Warrington.

The Leeds Warrior claimed the British title on his way to becoming a world champion and the 30-year-old’s achievements serve as an inspiration for Hargreaves.

He added: “Watching him from where he has been and what he has done now, it is mad.

“All the fans he has behind him, that is something I want. What he has done is amazing, it is an inspiration.”

Hargreaves is a five-time Yorkshire champion and will be trained by Mo Patel at Purge Boxing Academy in Batley. He won his national development titles under the coaching of Patel and his brother, Ben Hargreaves, who will remain involved with his coaching.

Before turning professional, Hargreaves had aims of winning the England Boxing National Amateur Championships, previously known as the ABA Championships.

However, Covid-19 dashed those hopes and he wasn’t ready to wait around before getting his chance in the pro ranks.

“There was one more thing I wanted to do as an amateur and that was go to the ABA Championships,” he added.

“I believe I could have won it, the Covid situation came about and the amateurs can’t do shows. It was pointless waiting about, by the time I would’ve got a chance to go to the ABA Championships, it might have been next year.

“I don’t have the time to wait about, I am 26 now.”

Frank Warren’s and Queensbury’s shows are shown live on BT Sport and Hargreaves’ first pro bout, which is due to be held within the next three to four months, could be televised live.

He added: “My first fight could be on TV. I only came back to boxing for a bit of fun.

“It is going all right for me at the moment.”