Lee Murtagh – Women’s Boxing Super Six


As many of you know, women’s boxing is something that’s close to my heart. I first became interested when I started to train Sam Smith around seven years ago. It was always difficult to get fights for her and though that can sometimes still be the case, there are more women taking up the sport recently. Obviously the phenomenal success of Nicola Adams has helped but I still don’t feel it’s really filtered down to grass roots.

So with this in mind I’ve taken a leaf out of mens pro-boxing and put together a ‘super six’ style tournament at EBF level. It’s not so much a knock-out tournament, more a series of regional titles which will be something to aim for and raise the profile of EBF women’s boxing. Previously there were not enough boxers about to do this – that’s no longer the case and it’s a matter of nurturing interest as opposed to just having them hanging about in the wings. The optimum weight for women boxers is around the nine stone nine mark, which is light weight and that’s the weight for my series of women’s bouts.  First up a couple of weeks ago in York was Carly Mc.Kenzie, fighting in her home town against Manchester based Michelle Mc.Kenzie. There will be a series of fights to follow up for Northern, Central and Celtic titles. Otley’s Helen Walsh is also in the mix as is another Yorkshire lass Elle Tallon.

Talking of women’s boxing, our own Sam Smith will be defending her WBU Inter continental belt on my next show at the Prism night club on Sunday 8th June. It’s been a long time since we’ve staged something in the town centre of Leeds but the card really warrants it.

Billy Wilkinson will be defending his EBF National title, Crossgates based Liam Hayes will at last get a crack at a title, after so many cancellations, when he fights for the EBF Yorkshire Area title and Seacroft heavyweight Graham Mattison will also get a crack at the Yorkshire area title. East End Parks Lee Mudd who still is the EBF Light-middleweight title holder is back after a year long sabbatical in a non title fight as he gets himself back in the mix before defending his title.  We’ll also have one of the aforementioned women’s title fights.

Prior to this (unfortunately as we go to press),  Bethlehem are sending a team out to Malta again. Alex Ferguson who previously recorded an ‘away win’ on the island will be flying out there, Liam Hayes will be making his European debut as will Lee Williams. Billy Wilkinson will be having another crack at the European title, hopefully this time he will keep his focus and bring the belt home. Malta is a great experience for all the lads and I hope to get a few Maltese on some of my shows in the near future.

Like everyone, I was shocked at the recent events at Corpus Christi school. I didn’t go there myself but my my sister nieces, nephews and cousins did. I can only offer my sincere condolences to her family and friends. I would hate this country to end up like America with metal detectors at the school gates but I  truly hope this is a one off. Maybe a return to old school values is the solution, more discipline, not less, I’m not suggesting the worlds problems can be solved by everyone stepping in a boxing ring but society has lost one of it’s good guys and that can’t be allowed to happen again.


Meeting one of the all time greats - Marvellous Marvin Hagler

Meeting one of the all time greats – Marvellous Marvin Hagler



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