Borg backs Selby for record breaking British title win

Borg backs Selby for record breaking British title win

Barry Town’s Andrew ‘AC Superstar’ Selby (4-0, 3KO) has finally found an opponent to face him for the British flyweight title.

The 27-year-old will take on Derby’s once-beaten Louis Norman (11-1-1, 2KO) at the Ice Arena Wales in Cardiff. The bout is awaiting a final seal of approval from the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBoC) for it to be sanctioned as a vacant British title contest.

It will be Chief Support to Lee Haskins’ IBF bantamweight world title defence against Mexico’s Ivan Morales on 14 May. It will be part of Sanigar Events’ partnership with Barry McGuigan’s Cyclone Promotions and broadcast live on terrestrial broadcaster Chanel 5.

In 1991, Cefn Fforest’s Robbie Regan scored a points victory against Joe Kelly in just his eighth paid outing. It set a milestone for the fewest fights a Welshman has won the British title in and Tony Borg, head coach at St Joseph’s Boxing Club in Newport, believes Selby will be prepared to break the 14-year record.

He said: “You don’t see Lee Selby (IBF world featherweight champion) in wars, he’s done all that in the gym and we’ll prepare Andrew the same way. They do the hard work in the gym, so the fights look easy.

“We will work on various things. He works hard and lives well outside of the gym, trying to follow in his brother’s footsteps. He’s in the gym with us every day, six days a week with one rest day. There’s lots of hard work to be done and he will do it.”

Like his elder brother, Andrew has aims to defend the belt on three occasions and own the British eight stone strap outright. However, there were fears that there wouldn’t be a willing domestic rival to win it in the first place.

Borg said: “It was a little bit of a worry that nobody will fight him for the British title. Thankfully, there are a couple of flyweights coming through and we’re happy to get a good opponent in the end.

“We know going through British level is the best way for Andrew. When you go to world level, it’s a massive jump from the amateurs. So, winning at British level, getting the rounds in and going on to the European scene is the right path of progress.”

Norman held the English title from 2013 to last year, when he was soundly out-pointed in almost every round against Surrey’s Charlie Edwards. However, Borg insists Selby isn’t taking anything for granted or paying too much attention to the only blemish of Norman’s record.

Borg said: “We’re happy to get an opponent who will actually fight him. When Andrew first came to me to ask about opponents, Louis Norman was the first name I gave to him because I knew he’d fight. I know Louis’ dad and I was aware he wants to fight the best.

“He’s a good fighter, he’s very capable. I don’t think he’s at the level Andrew is at but he’s a good fighter. We know he’s coming to give us a good fight, it’s a big chance for him and it’s a big fight for us.”

Should Selby win, the door will remain open for his former Team GB rival Edwards, who received criticism when he turned down a vacant title fight earlier this month. However, Borg understands why Edwards wants to let it develop.

He said: “I was disappointed but it’s to be expected. Charlie Edwards against Selby, at this stage, is going to earn Charlie a fraction of what he wants and what he could have 12 months down the line – that’s why he did it.

“It was the same for Carl Frampton and Scott Quigg. They could have fought for a British title and got peanuts for it compared to what they had for a world title fight. They waited, waited, waited and got massive earnings in the end. That’s why Charlie doesn’t want the fight now.”

Edwards reasoning was that he wanted to let the event against Selby grow in to a bigger occasion. With the platform of a mass audience, switch-hitting Selby could be in the driving seat when negotiations finally begin with Edwards’ team, MGM Marbella and Eddie Hearn.

Speaking on Selby’s new situation, Borg said: “Terrestrial TV getting back involved is such a huge bonus to die-hard boxing fans and coaches who have been keeping with the sport for years, waiting for the breaks. Sky have been getting all the big fights, so Channel 5 is a big bonus.

“New arena, big fights for the boxers and it’s all looking good for Welsh boxing and Andrew Selby.”