British Boxing Board of Control back Frank Warren in dispute with Gary Sykes’ opponent Stephen Smith

Gary Sykes remains the mandatory challenger to the British super featherweight title. Pic by Javed Iqbal
Gary Sykes remains the mandatory challenger to the British super featherweight title. Pic by Javed Iqbal

The British Boxing Board of Control have decided that British super featherweight champion Stephen Smith will not be allowed to defend his title on any promotion other than that of Frank Warren, which is scheduled for Saturday December 7 at the Liverpool Echo Arena against Dewsbury’s Gary Sykes.

There had been talk that Smith would defend his title against Sykes on the Carl Froch v George Groves bill on Saturday November 23 in Manchester on a show promoted by Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Sport.

However, the BBBofC has already formally sanctioned the fight to take place at the Liverpool Echo Arena in December.

Robert Smith, the General Secretary of the BBBofC, stated on Monday that until the Board has heard the dispute and made a decision Stephen Smith “will not be able to appoint another person to act on his behalf as manager nor will he be able to negotiate with others on his own behalf. It follows that, the Board will not allow him to participate in a contest arranged by a third party.”

The statement concluded ‘should any party wish to engage the services of Stephen Smith, they should contact Frank Warren’.

Sykes remains the mandatory challenger to the British super featherweight title and is just one win away from claiming the Lonsdale belt outright.