Starie set for big exposure
BOXING: David Starie, Suffolk's British and Commonwealth super-middleweight boxing champion, has flown to Memphis ahead of his appearance on Saturday night's Lennox Lewis-Mike Tyson bill.
By Dave Allard
DAVID Starie, Suffolk's British and Commonwealth super-middleweight boxing champion, has flown to Memphis ahead of his appearance on Saturday night's Lennox Lewis-Mike Tyson bill.
The 27-year-old former Hurstlea-Kerridge Club of Needham Market amateur is hoping that his bout with Canadian Jess Willard will get on the live Sky Sports pay-per-view screen.
A spokesman for his promoters, Golden Fists, said: "There is a good chance David may be on live as the undercard to the big heavyweight world title showdown unfolds.
"If it does it will be tremendous exposure for him."
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Starie, who is in America with his manager and trainer Gordon Holmes, should be too slick for former cruiserweight Willard.
A victory would set him up for a fight against German Marcus Beyer, an eliminator to decide who will challenge Canadian Eric Lucas for his world super-middleweight title, the WBC crown.
Steve Spartacus, the Bramford light heavyweight who is unbeaten in nine professional contests, is a former stable-mate of Starie's at Barry James' Hurstlea gym in Needham.
Today he said: "To be on this bill is terrific for David. His promoters, Golden Fists, work with the Lion Promotions company that is owned by Lennox Lewis. He could get on the live show, but whether he does or not, the coverage he will get in America will be great for his career."
Willard won 16 fights as a cruiserweight, but lost in a challenge for the WBO crown held by Sheffield's Johnny Nelson.
He has lost six in a row after going back to super-middleweight.
Willard has a reputation as an awkward opponent, but should be no match for the ever-impressive Starie.
Last month Starie, who lives at Elmswell, was given a tremendous boost when it was revealed that Lewis has been watching videos of previous fights by the Suffolk boxer as part of his preparations for Tyson.
This will not be the first time that Starie has been on a Tyson bill.
Two years ago he lost to Joe Calzaghe in a bid to wrest the WBO world crown from the Welshman on a night when Iron Mike topped the bill.
This was at the MEN Arena in Manchester when Tyson stopped Britain's Julius Francis in the first round.
ON the injury front, the popular ring showman Spartacus is struggling. He was hoping to fight again in July, but his sore hand is still giving problems and today he was having X-rays.