ELLIS ZORRO AND Willy Hutchinson will make first defences of their newly won title belts at London’s York Hall on Friday 15 September, live on TNT Sports.

Cruiserweight Zorro (16-0, 7 KOs) took ownership of the WBO European championship in May, applying a spectacular finish following a gruelling battle with former British light heavyweight champion Hosea Burton.

Light heavyweight Hutchinson (16-1, 12) parted Ezequiel Osvaldo Maderna from his WBC International title in a brutal fashion, knocking down the Argentinean twice ahead of a fourth-round stoppage.

Hutchinson, approaching 25, is excited to launch his title reign and make gains in the WBC world rankings.

“Oh, I am looking forward to it, of course I am,” said the former World Amateur Champion. “Obviously, with being a champion this time, it is good to defend and start pushing on. It is not so much different now, but it is all new to me, it is another experience in my life, and I am sure there will be plenty more of them.

“I can start getting up those rankings now and start chasing, start chasing the big names. That is the plan, I am 25 in a couple of days, and it is time to start pushing on now, isn’t it? It is time to start smashing these fellas.

“My last fight was all well and good, but you still haven’t seen the best of me, that is the truth. The best is yet to come. It was a step forward in my career and, step by step, I am getting better and better. In this next one I am going to get even better.”

Zorro, 30, for his part, is clearly delighted that his cruiserweight career is now sharply gathering momentum following his winning exploits in the short-form Boxxer tournament in mid-2022.

“I think this is the quickest turn-around I’ve had since I was fighting on small hall shows,” he reflected. “I think that is what I was looking forward to with winning a title and then defending it.

“I’ve gone from, trying to get on a card and sitting around after winning the Boxxer, to headlining and winning a title and now headlining again to defend it. I am over the moon, to be honest with you, I am happy it is at York Hall again and my last two have been good fights for the fans.

“I am looking forward to it, I am not being over-confident, I am just over the moon to be this active because I haven’t been since I was fighting journeymen. I am just really happy.”

Also featuring on the card will be undefeated featherweight Masood Abdulah (8-0, 5) with the Islington man hopeful of landing a maiden title soon. Meanwhile, Chatham light heavyweight Karol Itauma (10-1, 7), Northampton super welterweight Carl Fail (9-0, 3) and Streatham bantamweight Chris Bourke (12-1, 7) will feature fighting over eight rounds.

Reading super welterweight Joshua Frankham (8-0, 2) and Maidstone welterweight Sean Noakes (5-0, 3) will be fighting over six, with Thamesmead cruiserweight Natty Ngwenya (2-0) and debut making middleweight Sam King from Luton in four-round fights.

Promoter Frank Warren added: “Once again this tremendous stage offers the opportunity for new champions to top up their experience at a higher level and for prospects to turn themselves into potential contenders.

“It is such a valuable platform for our young fighters to develop and it is delivering the results we intended, with both Ellis Zorro and Willy Hutchinson showing such promising signs of what is to come from them in years to come.

“Ellis and Willy were so impressive against strong opposition last time out and they made statements in the ring that got people talking and excited about future fights.

“At York Hall this time there is also a first title opportunity for the undefeated Masood Abdulah and I am also looking forward to seeing the progress made by the rest of the young fighters on the card who are closing in on title contention themselves.”

Tickets for the York Hall show on Friday 15 September are on sale now available from: ticketmaster.co.uk.

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