Fightzone and Combat Academy – in affiliation with Stephen Vaughan – will kick off 2023 in fashion with a high title battle on Feb twenty fifth, stay from Malta.

Headlining on the Hilton Resort in St. Julians shall be Connor Butler versus Craig Derbyshire contesting the Commonwealth Flyweight Title. This historic event – the primary time ever {that a} Commonwealth belt can have been contested on the island of Malta – is a basic encounter between skilled professional and younger starlet.

Liverpool’s Butler hasn’t put a glove improper since turning over in 2018. The undefeated 24-year-old has raced to 9 wins and a single draw (bout halted after a conflict of heads) and has barely misplaced a spherical in these 10 outings. The infant-faced fighter has naturally although been in studying fights since his debut and now faces the primary actual check of his profession in opposition to the well-travelled Derbyshire.

Doncaster’s Derbyshire is a tricky man and a great fighter, with a really misleading document. With eight wins and 4 attracts from 40 bouts, anybody may very well be forgiven for pondering he was within the improper sport however don’t be deceived. A professional since 2014, the 31-year-old has fought an array of high British fighters and – nearly at all times – within the away nook. The Yorkshireman is in respectable type and – with discover and one thing to battle for – is an actual handful, evidenced by his break up determination draw with British Champion Tommy Frank in April … a battle many ringsiders had him successful.

This battle shall be pivotal to each males. The encounter will, seemingly, symbolize Craig’s final shot at a serious title – whereas being the primary likelihood for Butler to take a step into the boxing limelight and make an enormous assertion.

“What an excellent battle to begin 2023,” stated Combat Academy’s Steve Crump. “We’ve not too long ago signed Connor and have excessive hopes for him, he’s from an excellent preventing metropolis in Liverpool and I feel he may observe within the footsteps of a number of the different nice little fighters which have come from there. It is a large check for him although in opposition to a fighter we all know very properly and has the power to upset our plans.”

“Craig confirmed what degree he’s at when he pushed Tommy [Frank] all the way in which for the British title earlier this 12 months,” agreed promoter, Dennis Hobson. “I don’t imagine this chance has come too early for Connor, however you simply by no means know. We imagine in him and he has an excellent future within the sport, however we’ll know far more about him after this contest.”

Stephen Vaughan, acknowledged: “I’m delighted to be working with Dennis and Steve on this present and to be making historical past by bringing a Commonwealth Title battle to Malta. That is going to be a improbable battle for Maletese boxing followers and Fightzone viewers. Connor is an actual expertise, however this can be a very powerful check so early in his profession, however I’m assured he’ll come by it.”

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