Tommy Coyle is aiming to put the disappointment of his defeat to Commonwealth lightweight champion Derry Mathews behind him when he faces John Simpson on Saturday, live on Sky Sports from the Hull Ice Arena.
Coyle tackles Simpson for the vacant IBF International title after returning to action in September with a four-round win. Coyle dominated the experienced Scouser and was cruising to victory before a huge left from out of nowhere knocked him to the canvas in the tenth and ended the contest.
“I put it down to a bit of inexperience and a lapse in concentration,” said Coyle. “I was so far ahead in the fight that I could have afforded to get on my back foot for a few rounds and not get involved. The inexperience in me saw that I had Derry hurt and that I could potentially get him out of there.
“The game plan was never to do that. I followed the instructions for nine rounds, listening to Jamie Moore, and in the tenth round the instructions went out of the window and I paid the price.
“If it had gone the distance I would have won. I think I was eight rounds up so if it had gone to points I would have been the Commonwealth champion. But lessons are blessings and in hindsight it was a blessing in disguise and I am quite glad of the outcome because I believe it has made me a better fighter. If I had have won I would have been on a high and wouldn’t really have analysed my performance in such a way that I have after being beaten.
“I have looked at that performance and out of such a great performance there were so many things I was doing wrong. One of the main things I was doing wrong was dropping my right hand when I threw a body shot; I got knocked out with a left hook because I dropped my right hand. I have drilled that in training with Jamie, we have gone over it and over it, and I comfortably believe I am out of that bad habit now.
“I am a fighter and when you get knocked down everybody wants to carry on. I managed to get up on seven and, I will be honest, I didn’t know what day of the week it was. I thought I had fallen over and I couldn’t understand why the referee was counting me. He must have looked into my eyes and known I wasn’t there. I would have carried on, that fight meant a hell of a lot to me.
“I have sort of given the people who want to fight Derry Mathews next a blueprint on how to beat him. I said all along, when Curtis Woodhouse was getting ready to fight him, that Curtis can’t fight on the back foot, he can only fight going forward. You are going to get knocked out if you are going to walk on to a shot. Jamie and I devised a game plan which would nullify Derry Mathews and it worked to a tee.
“I think I shocked a hell of a lot of people. It has raised my stock in the boxing world and it is probably why Eddie and Matchroom have given me another opportunity to fight on such a big show on Saturday.”
On the same bill, Hull's Luke Campbell MBE fights for the third time as a pro and the second time in his hometown, with Lee Connolly taking on the Olympic Gold medalist.
Unbeaten Sheffield heavyweight Richard 'The Inferno' Towers faces Australian Lucas 'Big Daddy' Browne in an eliminator for the Commonwealth title and Samir Mouneimne and Josh Warrington battle for the vacant Commonwealth featherweight title. Driffield lightweight Curtis Woodhouse returns after his Commonwealth title challenge, former world title challenger Rendall Munroe continues his comeback and two more Hull favourites are in action – light welter Zak Collins and lightweight Joel Haigh.
Tickets are on sale priced at £40, £60 and £100, with VIP tickets priced at £150 – all tickets are available from Matchroom Sport at www.matchroomboxing.com and on 01277 359900.