Tag Archives: trail

Tim Bresnan back to bowling in a fortnight after elbow operation

Bresnan to get back in the swing of things in a fortnight after undergoing elbow operation

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

19:53 GMT, 3 April 2013

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UPDATED:

19:54 GMT, 3 April 2013

On the comeback trail: Tim Bresnan

On the comeback trail: Tim Bresnan

England bowler Tim Bresnan will return to action in a fortnight following an operation on his right elbow.

The 28-year-old, who was named in a 30-man England squad for the summer season, underwent an operation in February and missed the tour of New Zealand.

The Yorkshireman is set to play in the three-day friendly against Lancashire at Headingley, which starts a week on Tuesday.

Bresnan said: ‘It would be wise to go into a friendly first up. I’m hoping to be fully fit and take a full part in that game and all the other games after that.’

Nicklas Bendtner Arsenal and Juventus striker undergoes successful surgery on thigh injury

On the comeback trail: Bendtner undergoes successful surgery on thigh injury but still out for two months

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UPDATED:

12:28 GMT, 18 December 2012

Bendtner leaving hospital after the surgery

Bendtner leaving hospital after the surgery

Juventus striker Nicklas Bendtner has undergone successful surgery on a thigh injury, the Serie A club have confirmed.

The on-loan Arsenal forward was treated in London by Arsenal consultant Ernest Schilders after suffering the injury in last week’s Coppa Italia meeting with Cagliari.

A statement on Juve’s official website confirmed that the 24-year-old has had the adductor longus tendon in his left thigh reinserted, with his prognosis and rehabilitation schedule to be verified with English doctors over the next few days.

Bendtner, who is likely to miss at least two months, has been a peripheral figure since joining the Italian champions on a season-long loan this summer.

Bendtner underwent successful surgery in London

Bendtner underwent successful surgery in London

Oscar De Le Hoya set to apply for British license – Jeff Powell

De La Hoya on his way as Golden Boy applies for British license

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UPDATED:

23:00 GMT, 17 December 2012

The Golden Boy is preparing to invade England with major boxing events show-casing Britain's 2012 Olympians on the under-cards of top Americans in world title fights.

Oscar De La Hoya and his company – in a move which will send shock waves through the ranks of the established UK promoters – are applying to the British Boxing Board of Control for a license.

They are also engaged in talks with several UK stars of the London Games, who are believed to include medalists Anthony Joshua, Luke Campbell and Anthony Ogogo.

Invasion: Oscar De La Hoya (left) could be set to sign up some British talent

Invasion: Oscar De La Hoya (left) could be set to sign up some British talent

More from Jeff Powell…

Jeff Powell: 50 Cent's rapping is small price to pay if he brings bling to the fight game (just pass me the earplugs please!)
10/12/12

Jeff Powell: Thank Heavens for Freddie… now he must see the light and never box again
03/12/12

Jeff Powell: Hatton can take the Tyson track and head for a better future after comeback
26/11/12

Jeff Powell: Over to you, Ricky… Froch hands over British baton to returning hero Hatton
19/11/12

Jeff Powell: Cannon fodder will help Brits catch the big fish in the end
12/11/12

Jeff Powell: Fury on the campaign trail for a world title if Klitschko's political move disappoints Haye
05/11/12

Jeff Powell: Steward is gone but Hearns will fight for The Kronk to live on
29/10/12

Jeff Powell boxing column: So long, Ricky Fatton! Returning Hitman vows to quit boozing between bouts
22/10/12

VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

The trans-Atlantic expansion of Golden Boy Promotions has been confirmed here in Los Angeles by chief executive Richard Schaefer.

He outlined his plans to British Board chairman Charles Giles and general secretary Robert Smith, who flew to LA for Amir Khan's resurrection fight on Saturday night.

Since Schaefer is a Swiss passport holder who is preparing to open offices in London and is already in negotiation with British television companies, they see no basis for objection.

Golden Boy are now the world's biggest promoters, staging more than 120 shows a year in the US and Mexico.

Schaefer says: 'There is fantastic opportunity for us in the UK. I have always said the British boxing fans are the most passionate in the world.

'Over here some people could hardly believe that Ricky Hatton sold out 20,000 tickets for his comeback fight before he even named his opponent.

'I love London and I will be spending a lot more time over there in the future.

'I am promising to help your Olympians maximise their potential and develop into big, successful stars. For that, I will be taking fighters under my wing personally for the first time.'

Schaefer is not only in discussion with the traditional UK television channels, such as Sky.

Intriguingly, he has sparked interest with British Telecom, who are rapidly becoming major players in the sports market, and is also exploring the possibility of an American network becoming the host broadcaster.

While he realises the impact this will have on the British boxing establishment, Schaefer does not expect the rivalry with Golden Boy's counterparts across the Pond to be bitter.

The initial concept is for no more than four shows a year and he says: 'I get on well with the British promoters. I have a good relationship with Mick Hennessy (who promotes Tyson Fury) and Frank Maloney (David Price).

'We have just enjoyed a positive negotiation with Eddie Hearn for Kell Brook to challenge Devon Alexander for his world title over here. Not only is Frank Warren an outstanding promoter but we are very good friends.

On the cards: Anthony Joshua (right) is believed to be in talks with De La Hoya's company

On the cards: Anthony Joshua (right) is believed to be in talks with De La Hoya's company

'I won't be trying to steal their fighters. But this is a competitive business so when any boxers become free agents at the end of their contracts then of course we will expect to have talk with those we like.'

Golden Boy's $200million-a-year turnover will lend massive weight to that bargaining power, as it appears to be doing with London's Olympic super-heavyweight champion Joshua and others of his team.

Several Team GB boxers have held back from committing their futures until their amateur funding runs out in March and the first Golden Boy promotion in Britain is not scheduled until the second quarter of the year.

Others under review are youngsters who just missed out on the Games 'but who have the ability and charisma we need.'

Schaefer is also tempting them all with the prospect of early US exposure on promotions over here.

Medal winner: Anthony Ogogo (left) shone for Team GB at the Olympics

Medal winner: Anthony Ogogo (left) shone for Team GB at the Olympics

In England, the 02 Arena in London tops the preferred list of venues. To fill that, Golden Boy will top the bills with big international names in world title fights.

For example, former champion Sugar Shane Mosley is planning to come out of retirement to challenge Paulie Malignaggi.

Says Schaefer: 'While that is coming too early for our first UK promotion that is the kind of fight which could take place over there.

'Adrien Broner is a dynamic younger champion who would relish the chance to do his thing in England.'

Nor is it beyond possibility that Floyd Mayweather – who appreciates his large fan base in Britain and often talks of how he would love to fight in London – could make the trip in 2014.

Schaefer said: 'We will promote in the UK with same quality and style we do in the USA.'

The gauntlet has been thrown down.

Tyson still all man

Mike Tyson has been forced to deny a spoof report which went viral in Asia – where it was taken as fact – that he has undergone a successful sex change operation to become a woman.

Just as well for the author that he did not say it to the face of the youngest ever world heavyweight champion.

He may have mellowed into a showman now but there was a glint of the old Iron Mike when he lisped: 'I never lose touch with my masculinity.'

Still the man: Mike Tyson had to deny spoof reports he had undergone a sex change

Still the man: Mike Tyson had to deny spoof reports he had undergone a sex change

Pacquiao v Mayweather still on the cards

The mega-bucks fight the world has been waiting so long to see may yet happen, despite Manny Pacquiao's brutal knockout by Juan Manuel Marquez.

Floyd Mayweather is scheduled to make his post-prison comeback in Las Vegas on May 4.

While that will probably be against Robert Guerrero, the Money Man has told the PacMan: 'Ease back in with an interim fight of your own to make sure there are no after-effects from that KO and we might look at my next date, in September.'

Chance: Floyd Mayweather could still fight Manny Pacquiao in a big-money bout

Chance: Floyd Mayweather could still fight Manny Pacquiao in a big-money bout

Munroe calls time

Rendall Munroe – who went from a dustbin round in Leicester to a world title fight in Tokyo – has retired following his super-bantamweight defeat by the fast-rising Scott Quigg.

He leaves the ring with his dignity and our admiration for a most worthy career.

Merchant hangs up his microphone

The doyen of American TV boxing analysts called his last fight on Saturday night, Nonito Donaire's victory over Jorge Arce in Houston.

Larry Merchant has hung up the microphone. He is 81 yet only last year, in a feisty post-fight interview in the ring, he famously told an angry Floyd Mayweather: 'I wish I was 30 years younger so I could kick your ass.'

I am doubly glad now that he and I had a long, reminiscent chat in Las Vegas on the eve of Pacquiao-Marquez a week earlier.

Thanks for the memories and all the wisdom, Larry. We will miss you at ringside.

Legend: Ringside analyst Larry Merchant is hanging up the microphone

Legend: Ringside analyst Larry Merchant is hanging up the microphone

Nicky Henderson to run Roberto Goldback in Gold Cup

Roberto back on the Gold trail as Henderson plans double assault at Newbury

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UPDATED:

22:30 GMT, 28 November 2012

Nicky Henderson will be double-handed in Saturday’s Hennessy Gold Cup after allowing Roberto Goldback to take his chance.

Henderson already has ante-post favourite Bobs Worth in the Newbury feature, but will also run his recent Ascot winner.

The Seven Barrows handler had initially indicated the 10-year-old would run at Newbury tomorrow, but those plans have changed.

Chance: Roberto Goldback will run in the Hennessy Gold Cup

Chance: Roberto Goldback will run in the Hennessy Gold Cup

He said: ‘We’ve had a change of heart and Roberto Goldback will run in the Hennessy after all. He’s a stayer and, while it’s not going to be easy as he has a lot of weight, we are happy with him.

'He probably won’t win over three and a quarter, but we will take our chance. At the moment, the plan would be for both Roberto Goldback and Bobs Worth to run.’

Henderson had expressed some concerns about the going for Bobs Worth, but his fears have been allayed after a visit to the Berkshire venue.

Doubling up: Bobs Worth will also take his chance in the Gold Cup

Doubling up: Bobs Worth will also take his chance in the Gold Cup

He added: ‘The ground is in good nick and it’s Newbury’s first meeting of the season which has helped. If they had had a couple of meetings already it would have been much worse.

‘They are saving some fresh ground for Saturday and we have a couple of dry days forecast so it might not be that bad.’

Ricky Hatton can now look to a bright future

Hatton can take the Tyson track and head for a better future after comeback

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UPDATED:

00:01 GMT, 27 November 2012

The end for Ricky Hatton was eerily reminiscent of the evening one of his idols realised that the force was no longer with him.

It was seven years ago to the month that Mike Tyson sat on his stool and forfeited the victory which gave run-of-the-mill heavyweight Kevin McBride his one moment of totally unexpected fame.

As an event it was less violent than Hatton's collapse under a brutal blow to the liver in Manchester on Saturday night but the shock which reverberated around the world was far greater.

The end: Ricky Hatton's comeback ended in disappointment on Saturday night

The end: Ricky Hatton's comeback ended in disappointment on Saturday night

Moving on: Hatton can hang up the gloves for good this time with his head held high

Moving on: Hatton can hang up the gloves for good this time with his head held high

Gave it a go: Hattonwent at Vyacheslav Senchenko of Ukraine at the Manchester Arena

Gave it a go: Hattonwent at Vyacheslav Senchenko of Ukraine at the Manchester Arena

More from Jeff Powell…

Jeff Powell: Over to you, Ricky… Froch hands over British baton to returning hero Hatton
19/11/12

Jeff Powell: Cannon fodder will help Brits catch the big fish in the end
12/11/12

Jeff Powell: Fury on the campaign trail for a world title if Klitschko's political move disappoints Haye
05/11/12

Jeff Powell: Steward is gone but Hearns will fight for The Kronk to live on
29/10/12

Jeff Powell boxing column: So long, Ricky Fatton! Returning Hitman vows to quit boozing between bouts
22/10/12

Jeff Powell: Retired and broke, Holyfield still has hope… but it's help he really needs
15/10/12

Jeff Powell: Tyson takes time to show Hatton and Haye the way back to the top
08/10/12

Jeff Powell: Sold out arena, tough opponent… all Hatton needs now is a TV station
01/10/12

VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

The outcome was the same – a comeback ended more abruptly than any of us could have imagined.

Both Hatton and Tyson had been out of action for more than three years. Tyson spent most of that time in prison, Hatton in wild and self-destructive excesses.

Tyson, one of the great boxers of the modern era, retrieved from his jail cell enough of his physical strength and aura of menace to regain the world heavyweight title.

Hatton, a fighter of the people and for the people, was too damaged by the freedom of his lifestyle to return for more than a single fight.

Yet both men have come through these toils clinging to a better future.

One difference is that where it took Tyson years after that surrender to build a new life, Hatton has done it while in the course of preparing for his one-night comeback.

Yet the hour of truth was the same for both men.

Tyson came before those of us who had chronicled his extraordinary career to say this about his capacity for almost decapitating opponents: 'I just can't do this any longer.'

Hatton told we who he had taken on a thrilling ride: 'It's not there any more.'

That said, Tyson walked out into the cold, dark, rain-soaked streets of a Washington night in November 2005, never to throw a punch in anger again. Hatton did the same in Manchester shortly after midnight on Saturday.

They say they never come back. But they do. And who is to say they shouldn't try.

Both the Hitman and the Iron Man have been improved by this harrowing experience.

Long may they remain so.

The end for Iron Mike: Tyson lost to Kevin McBride in Washington

The end for Iron Mike: Tyson lost to Kevin McBride in Washington

It's certainly not cricket, Freddie

The up-coming weekend is heavy in more ways than one for boxing.

Two Brits aiming for world title shots next year – David Price and Tyson Fury – should move another rung up that ladder without undue discomfort.

It is less certain what will happen when a former Ashes winning cricketer – Freddie Flintoff – steps into the prize-ring for the first time.

Neither Price nor Fury are likely to be derailed by Matt Skelton or Kevin Johnson, respectively.

Skelton, who is a toned advertisement for fitness fanaticism despite being well into into his 40s, will do his best to rough up Price for as long as he can evade the giant Liverpudlian's sledgehammer right hand at Aintree on Friday night.

Change of scene: Andrew Flintoff (right, with British champion David Price) laces up the gloves on Friday

Change of scene: Andrew Flintoff (right, with British champion David Price) laces up the gloves on Friday

Johnson, who most of us on this side of the Atlantic thought had retired, will bring his American wiles and professional pride to Belfast on Saturday night and make it as awkward as possible for Fury to land his knockout bazooka.

Neither fight is likely to go the distance and the odds are that Fury will precede Price into world championship challenges to a Klitschko next year.

Predicting the consequences of Flintoff entering the MEN Arena on Friday evening is more problematic.

Whatever Freddie thinks boxing for real may be like, one thing is for sure – it isn't cricket.

There are dangers inherent in facing up to fast bowlers but the object of the game is not to hit the opponent in the head.

Flintoff is not the first successful British sportsman to fancy his chances in the ring.

Olympic rower James Cracknell, for one, ventured into one heavyweight fight which lasted less than a minute.

There is a difference with Flintoff. He has been taken under the wing of Barry McGuigan, who is not only one of our legendary world champions but also one of the most intelligent icons in the hard old game.

Bring it on: Flintoff has been training under the guidance of Barry McGuigan and his son Shane (pictured)

Bring it on: Flintoff has been training under the guidance of Barry McGuigan and his son Shane (pictured)

McGuigan and his fitness trainer son Shane have pared 50lbs of Flintoff's post-cricketing flab, kept him off the booze and promise they are bringing him to this moment properly prepared.

In that, they have convinced the British Boxing Board of Control to issue Freddie with a license.

/11/26/article-2238757-1626019E000005DC-274_634x449.jpg” width=”634″ height=”449″ alt=”Dream team: Flintoff with Barry (left) and Shane McGuigan” class=”blkBorder” />

Dream team: Flintoff with Barry (left) and Shane McGuigan

There is no denying that Flintoff has dedicated himself to the task and lived right during his training camp.

But although his hand-picked opponent is just a two-fight professional novice plucked out of the American back-woods, he will be at physical risk.

Reports from those who have seen him sparring are mixed, to say the least, and more than one established boxer has warned him to be shocked and rocked to his boots the first time he is caught by a blow from a heavyweight wearing the lighter fight gloves.

Flintoff himself says: 'I won't know what it will be like until the bell rings.'

Questions have been asked of the Board's decision to sanction this experiment. Although they have studied Flintoff in the gym and put him through stringent medical tests, they too will be hoping that nothing goes too painfully wrong.

It takes courage for any man – or woman these days – to climb through the ropes, notably so in this case given the memory of how worryingly long it took for Cracknell to be revived.

So it would be churlish not to wish our Freddie the best of luck, along with out Barry and our game.

Price-Skelton and Flintoff's debut will be live Friday night on BoxNation. Fury-Johnson will be live Saturday night on Channel 5.

Goodby brave Camacho

Hector Camacho was as brave as any man to have laced up the gloves and his senseless slaying is a cowardly violation of the fighting qualities he brought to the ring.

Yes, the Macho man had slipped into a cocaine habit towards the end of his career and there are suggestions of a drugs gang connection to his fatal shooting.

Even so, for this to happen in Puerto Rico, where he was a national hero, defies belief.

Boxing grieved with his family as they came to the heart-rending decision to allow his life-support machine to be switched off.

Sad ending: Hector 'Macho' Camacho was shot and killed in Puerto Rico

Sad ending: Hector 'Macho' Camacho was shot and killed in Puerto Rico

It is more years than he would have cared to remember since Camacho won world titles at three weights, lost to Oscar De La Hoya and then ended Sugar Ray Leonard's last comeback with a famous win in his last fight.

Yet just lately, aged 50, he was considering a comeback. If it had happened he would have thrown himself into it with all his old effervescence.

We would also have seen again that infectious smile, which made the shooting of Camacho in the face all the more obscene…..but for which we will remember him.

Jack Wilshere back on the goal trail: Image of the week by Andy Hooper

Andy Hooper: My image of the week – Jack back on the goal trail for Arsenal

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UPDATED:

14:31 GMT, 26 November 2012

My image of the week is Jack Wilshere celebrating his first goal since making his comeback.

Arsenal midfielder Wilshere had been sidelined for 17 months with ankle and knee problems but was back among the goals in the 2-0 Champions League win over Montpellier.

The picture clearly tells the story as you can see the relief on Wilshere's face and the dejected defenders in the background.

Nikon D3
Lens 70-200mm
Exposure 1/800th of a second at F2.8, ISO 1600x

Welcome back: Jack Wilshere celebrates scoring for Arsenal against Montpellier

Tyson Fury on track if Vitali Klitschko disappoints David Haye – Jeff Powell

Fury on the campaign trail for a world title if Klitschko's political move disappoints Haye

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UPDATED:

00:10 GMT, 6 November 2012

While one British heavyweight is begging Vitali Klitshcko not to retire, another could find himself fighting for a world heavyweight title if the elder of the giant Ukrainian brothers goes into politics full-time.

It will be famine for David Haye but most probably feast for Tyson Fury should Vitali hang up the gloves so as to put his hat into the ring of government.

Former world champion Haye, who is set to star in the new series of I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here, keeps repeating that he will only box again if it is against a Klitschko……which in effect means Vitali since Wladimir thrashed him last year and sees no point in going through the same process once more.

Opportunity knocks: Fury (left)

Opportunity knocks: Fury (left)

More from Jeff Powell…

Jeff Powell: Steward is gone but Hearns will fight for The Kronk to live on
29/10/12

Jeff Powell boxing column: So long, Ricky Fatton! Returning Hitman vows to quit boozing between bouts
22/10/12

Jeff Powell: Retired and broke, Holyfield still has hope… but it's help he really needs
15/10/12

Jeff Powell: Tyson takes time to show Hatton and Haye the way back to the top
08/10/12

Jeff Powell: Sold out arena, tough opponent… all Hatton needs now is a TV station
01/10/12

Jeff Powell boxing column: Boxers are brave but none more so than Big Corrie
24/09/12

Jeff Powell: Interim bouts hamper prospects of blockbuster Mayweather v Pacquiao showdown
17/09/12

Jeff Powell: Nothing can prepare Flintoff for the shock of taking thunderous blows in the ring
11/09/12

VIEW FULL ARCHIVE

Fury, the young traveller journeying towards his title shot, will find the path less steep if Vitali abdicates the WBC crown.

Fury has been focused on fighting himself into position to challenge either of the Klitschkos, who hold all the heavyweight alpha-belts between them.

The next stage in that campaign comes on December 8 in Belfast when he takes on Russia's unbeaten contender Denis Boytson.

That event, to be televised live on Channel 5, is being billed as a final eliminator. But at the moment WBC president Jose Sulaiman is saying: 'It is a semi-final.'

That organisation has declared that the winner of a December 15 fight in Venezuela between Chris Arreola and Bermaine Stiverne will become Vitali's mandatory challenger, with the victor of that bout ordered to meet Fury or Stiverne next.

However, if Klitschko calls it a day then Arreola or Stiverne will be instructed to meet the winner of Fury and Boytsov for the vacant title.

On that basis, Fury could find himself a world champion as early as next spring.

Boytsov will come to Northern Ireland boasting an unbeaten record of 31 wins, 25 by knockout. But Fury is also undefeated and he, too, has a high KO percentage.

Most significantly Fury is significantly the taller man, as he is in the majority of his fights. While that would not be the case against either of the Klitschkos, both Arreola, the favourite, and Stiverne are also smaller.

Boytsov, with his pale imitation of Mike Tyson, is a crowd-pleasing slugger with the power to test Fury's questionable chin…..if he can connect cleanly.

The greater probability is that Fury will land first on the Russian. The incentive for him to do so could not be greater.

A week later his promoter Mick Hennessy will be hoping that Arreola prevails, even though the American is the more highly-rated protagonist in his eliminator.

If not, he could find himself plunged into negotiations with the most Machiavellian of all boxing promoters.

Political move: Vitali Klitschko is the leader of the Ukrainian opposition party UDAR

Political move: Vitali Klitschko is the leader of the Ukrainian opposition party UDAR

Reports of Don Knig's demise as a figure in boxing have been, as Mark Twain would say, exaggerated.

As Stiverne's promoter he won the rights to stage the Arreola fight with a massive $1.1million purse bid.

It is not only Fury who is one step away from a world title. Just as Haye is not alone in hanging on Vitali Klitschko's decision, which is vaguely expected next month but may not come until next year.

King, the extravagant showman who brought us the Rumble in the Jungle and the Thrilla' in Manila among many of the ring's most famous fights, is on the brink of a sensational come-back of his own.

Froch will know to go for KO

Carl Froch was almost spared the obligation of an away re-match with Lucian Bute as the Canada-based Romanian flirted with defeat in Montreal on Saturday night.

Bute, from whom the Nottingham Cobra took the IBF world super-middleweight title in thunderous style earlier this year, needed a huge final round to be sure of a points victory over Russia's unheralded Denis Gratchev.

Two of the judges – and most observers – had it very close going into the 12th at the Bell Arena, where Froch will honour his promise of a return bout with Bute on March 30.

Bute, who had been rocked two or
three times in the earlier exchanges, dug deep for a blazing finish
which carried him to a unanimous decision.

However
the risible 118-110 margin logged by the third hometown judge in front
of a partisan crowd suggests it would be safer for Froch to repeat his
stunning KO victory over Bute rather than rely on the scoring.

The Cobra: Carl Froch will face Lucian Bute once more

The Cobra: Carl Froch will face Lucian Bute once more

Had Bute been beaten by Grachev the re-match clause with Froch would have been invalidated.

The Cobra's plans for two further re-matches in 2013 against the only two men to have beaten him have been complicated by the WBA nominating the winner of Mikkel Kessler's December clash with Brian Magee as the mandatory challenger to Andre Ward.

Froch is in negotiations for a midsummer spectacular against Kessler at Nottingham Forest's City Ground then a return bout with Ward, probably in America.

The WBA have acceded to Kessler's request that he be given a second shot at Ward if he beats Magee.

However, the Viking Warrior was much more soundly beaten by the self-styled Son Of God than was Froch, who will now petition the WBA to amend that decision in favour of sanctioning a fight between him and Ward as the real final eliminator.

Constantino update:

Readers intrigued by the item in a previous column about the one-handed boxer will be interested to know that he won his professional debut fight in New York.

Michael Constantino, who was born without a right hand but wears a glove on the end of that arm, knocked out Nathan Ortiz with a wicked left hook and thereby, at 33, realised his life-long dream.

Now he says: 'From here on I'm taking it one fight – and one hand – at a time.'

Good for him.

Demba Ba doubt for Newcastle trip to Liverpool

Newcastle striker Ba doubtful for trip to Liverpool with shin injury

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UPDATED:

14:59 GMT, 31 October 2012

Newcastle United are sweating on the fitness of Demba Ba for Sunday’s visit to Liverpool.

The Senegal star injured his shin in last weekend’s win over West Bromwich Albion and hobbled off. Although a scan has revealed no serious damage, the striker has not trained so far this week and is rated '50-50'.

Crocked: Ba comes off against West Brom on Saturday

Crocked: Ba comes off against West Brom on Saturday

Ba will have a fitness test ahead of Sunday’s trip to Anfield but if he is not passed fit, manager Alan Pardew will turn to Papiss Cisse, who sat out most of the 2-1 win over West Brom before scoring the late winner off his back.

It was the first time both Ba and Cisse had netted in a Barclays Premier League game since the February win over Aston Villa when Cisse made his Newcastle debut.

Pardew said: 'I think Demba is 50-50 at best.

Top scorer: The Senegalese has bagged seven goals already this season

Top scorer: The Senegalese has bagged seven goals already this season

'We’ve got Papiss back on the goal trail and Shola and Sammy (Ameobi) so we’re happy with that.

'It is very important to have that. Papiss is fit and well and we are looking forward to seeing him this weekend.'

Liverpool are one of the sides linked with signing Ba who, Pardew revealed last month, still has a clause in his contract which will allow him to leave St James’s Park for 7.5million.

Andy Carroll: I wasn"t given a fair chance at Liverpool

Carroll: I don't have anything to prove, I wasn't given a fair chance at Liverpool

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UPDATED:

08:17 GMT, 23 October 2012

Liverpool misfit Andy Carroll has claimed he was never given a 'fair chance' to succeed at Anfield.

The England striker scored just six goals in 44 appearances after his 35million switch from Newcastle.

On a mission: Carroll aims to hit the goal trail at West Ham

On a mission: Carroll aims to hit the goal trail at West Ham

Carroll was farmed out on loan to West Ham after Brendan Rodgers replaced Kenny Dalglish.

But the 23-year-old feels he could have adapted his style to suit Rodgers.

'I haven't really had a fair chance at Liverpool,' Carroll said.

'I was really told that I should move on to keep playing regular football, and obviously then Sam wanted me here and told me I would be playing regular games.

'So, for me it was a no-brainer coming here and to play.

'Obviously, I didn't really get a chance there.

'A new manager came in and I wasn't part of his plans. For me to play football, that was my chance to do that. That is why I am here at Upton Park.

Struggle: Andy Carroll failed to shine at Liverpool

Struggle: Andy Carroll failed to shine at Liverpool

'I think I could fit into every system. I believe in what I can do. Obviously he [Rodgers] has his beliefs and he didn't think that.

'But for me, obviously, it was better to move on instead of waiting for my chance – which he told me might not come.

'Coming here, I have got a great chance to start games and score goals, which I haven't really had many of last season.

'I don't think I have got a point to prove, that is the wrong way to put it.

'I know what I can do and the ability I have got. I know what I am capable of.

'If other people don't believe it, that is fine. I just get on with it.

'But at the end of the day, I know what I can do.'

Hammers boss Sam Allardyce admitted he did not know if his on-loan striker will stay in East London all season.

Liverpool have only one senior striker in Luis Suarez, after failing to buy before the summer window closed and then losing Fabio Borini for months with a foot injury.

'I think that depends,' said Allardyce on the possibility of Carroll being recalled early to Anfield. 'Obviously when January comes around it will be assessed then, on just what has happened at Liverpool and how well Andy is doing.

'He is still only a young man and he has got a lot of improving to do. But he is such an important player for us already.

'We have got off to this start and everybody has played their part but as the old saying goes, the front man plays well, the team plays well.'

Ricky Hatton to apply for fight licence

Hatton to apply for fight licence despite Twitter denials

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UPDATED:

22:38 GMT, 9 September 2012

Representatives of Ricky Hatton will meet officials from the British Boxing Board of Control in the next 48 hours before applying for a licence for the two-weight world champion to resume his fighting career.

The retired 33-year-old took to Twitter on Sunday to laugh off speculation about his return to the ring, but Sportsmail can reveal informal talks have already been held between the Hatton camp and the BBBC about the reinstatement of his licence with a follow-up discussion expected to take place on Monday or Tuesday.

Comeback trail: Hatton looking back to his lean and mean best at a press launch in London

Comeback trail: Hatton looking back to his lean and mean best at a press launch on September 5

With no obvious obstacles
precluding Hatton from gaining a licence, it seems certain he will make a
winter return, with the MEN Arena in Manchester earmarked to stage his
first fight in three years on November 24.

Hatton mocked weekend
reports that suggested an announcement was imminent. In reply to one
tweet, he wrote: 'Don't you find it strange that it's been in every
paper, all over the box, but not on here Don't you think if a comebacks
on you'd here it from me its everywhere and I havnt said or done a
single interview.ha ha.'

Game over It seemed Hatton's career was finished after the brutal defeat to Manny Pacquiao

Game over It seemed Hatton's career was finished after the brutal defeat to Manny Pacquiao

Meanwhile, Tony Bellew declared
himself ready for a second world title shot after beating Edison Miranda
on Saturday. The Liverpool light-heavyweight stopped Miranda with a
left to the body in the ninth then called for a chance to avenge his
2011 loss to WBO champion Nathan Cleverly or face IBF king Tavoris Cloud
or WBA holder Beibut Shumenov.

He said: 'In an ideal world I'd
fight Shumenov or Cloud tomorrow,' he said. 'Chad Dawson (WBC champion)
is the best. If I become his mandatory I'll definitely fight him but I
wouldn't choose him. I'd fight anyone, even King Kong on the Empire
State Building.'

David Haye's hopes of a fight
against Vitali Klitschko are alive after the WBC heavyweight champion
beat Manuel Charr on cuts in Moscow on Saturday. Klitschko plans to
retire and focus on a political career but Haye is hopeful of luring him
into a 2013 bout.