Preview: Webb sets off to Scotland in must-win eliminator against ex-footballer Brophy

Preview: Webb sets off to Scotland in must-win eliminator against ex-footballer Brophy

Swansea’s Tobias ‘The Gentleman’ Webb (16-3-1, 2KO) has been presented with an unexpected springboard back to title contention but will have to travel to Scotland for the chance.

The super-middleweight will face Caldercruix’s unbeaten David Brophy (14-0-1, 1KO) in a Commonwealth title eliminator at the Meadowbank Sports Centre in Edinburgh on Saturday. It’s unlikely that either operator will be looking to score a stoppage given that neither are reputable power punchers, placing more importance on game plans and their application which are likely to be the deciding factors. Brophy, a former footballer for Dundee United, was originally set to headline the MGM Scotland promoted show against Ghana’s Charles Adamu.

However, when the former Commonwealth champion withdrew, Brophy was soon reassigned a new and certainly different task. Despite taking the contest on relatively short notice, 27-year-old Webb, nephew of ex-WBO belt holder Enzo Maccarinelli, should be in shape. Webb had been in camp for a trip to Finland in October but the bout fell through when the necessary paperwork wasn’t submitted to the British Boxing Board of Control [BBBoC] in time.

After the disappointment, Webb quickly recommenced training with John Kaighin and he has appeared at Gary Lockett’s gym weekly – the same place Brophy visited in June 2014 when he sparred the Rhondda’s Commonwealth light-middleweight champion Liam Williams. Two weeks ago, Webb ensured the training didn’t go to waste, out-pointing Aberystwyth’s useful journeyman Jamie Ambler over six rounds in Llandudno.

Since becoming a Welsh Area titlist with a fourth round retirement win against Lewis Patterson in 2013, Webb has suffered two set backs. A challenge for the WBC International strap against Liverpool’s Callum Smith began promisingly in the opening round but ended in a knockout loss three minutes later as the excellent prospect found range with his trademark body shots. It was no slight on Webb, who was beaten by one of British boxing’s most talented up-and-comers and he headed in to away territory for a title eliminator against Sheffield ‘s Liam Cameron with justified hope, only to be outfought for a decision loss.

The missed opportunity was an undoubted setback for Webb but he enters this weekend having stepped up and learned lessons, whereas Brophy remains relatively untested. The Billy Nelson trained prospect has proved himself to be a solid all-rounder with few glaring weaknesses but, through no fault of his own, he’s yet to step up to levels where more serious questions are asked.

Brophy is likely to hold the edge in strength and Webb would be unwise to attempt to match him in that category. If the Welshman can instead utilise the speed and skills that led to a successful amateur career then he can claim a close decision win.

Meanwhile, Barry Town’s ex-Olympian Andrew Selby (2-0, 2KO) will fight for the third time as a professional 400 miles away in Surrey. The flyweight will appear on the undercard of Mick Hennessy’s show at the Westcroft Leisure Centre in Carshalton and it will be televised by terrestrial broadcaster Channel 5.

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