Sykes likely to face title fight with Buckland in Wales

DEWSBURY’S British super featherweight champion Gary Sykes may have to travel to Wales to defend his crown and win the Lonsdale belt outright after Hatton Promotions won the right to stage autumn’s mouth-watering clash with Gary Buckland.

Buckland is promoted by Hatton, who won the right to stage the fight after the British Boxing Board of Control confirmed they had put in the highest purse bid by Wednesday’s deadline.

It seems likely that Hatton will want Buckland, the only man to defeat Sykes in the professional ranks, to have home advantage for the contest, probably in either Newport or Cardiff before the end of October.

All three of Sykes’s British title victories have come at Huddersfield Sports Centre but although the 27-year-old wanted to fight in Dewsbury, those plans will have to be shelved for the time being.

Buckland defteated Sykes in the Prizefighter competition last November but the Dewsbury star has since successfully defended his British crown by beating Carl Johanneson in March.

He is now just one victory away from winning the Lonsdale belt outright and if he beats Buckland, Sykes would get a crack at the European title.

Sykes said: “It looks like I will be going on the road, which is a bit of a blow because I so wanted to box in front of my fans in Dewsbury.

“But I have to look on the positive side as I will be going down there without the pressure of fighting at home and I’ll be going into the lions den to win the belt outright.”

Sykes returns to Huddersfield next Saturday, July 23, for a six-round warm-up fight against an opponent to be named Tickets for the Huddersfield show are available from Mark Waters on 07890 071883.