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Dewsbury’s Anderson faces re-scheduled boxing debut

Trainer Lee Murtagh is using his wealth of experience in professional boxing to coach Dewsbury cruiserweight Aidan Anderson, who makes his debut in Bradford on February 24.
Trainer Lee Murtagh is using his wealth of experience in professional boxing to coach Dewsbury cruiserweight Aidan Anderson, who makes his debut in Bradford on February 24.

Dewsbury boxer Aidan Anderson has returned to the gym ahead of his re-scheduled professional debut against Blackpool’s Malcolm Richardson on Saturday, February 24.

Anderson was due to make his bow in the paid ranks on December 1 against the same opponent in Middlesbrough but that show was cancelled when the top of the bill bout fell through.

Anderson had a spell out of Lee Murtagh’s Bethlehem Gym in Leeds, as he had a time working away, but is now back training ahead of the February show, which takes place at the Royal Taj (formerly the Connaught Rooms) in Bradford.

Richardson lost to Ben McGivern on his own professional debut in September but the veteran has been around the semi-pro circuit for over a decade and Anderson knows he will have to be well prepared come next month’s bout.

Murtagh boasted a 51 fight professional career, which included 33 wins and saw him win a Central Area title and crowned the Irish super welterweight champion in 2012.

He now runs the Bethlehem Boxing Club in Leeds, where 27-year-old Anderson is based.

Murtagh said: “Working with Aidan has been like having a blank canvas.

“He had 12 non-pro, non-amateur fights but since he came down to us we have started again with him.

“I was more gutted for Aidan that his bout got cancelled than any other of my fighters on the bill.

“He had been doing 12 rounds a day working on technique and he had really come on.

“I’ve known Mally for over 10 years and he boxed on my first ever semi pro show and he has been around the circuit a bit.

“It will be a good debut for Aidan and he will learn a lot from the fight as Mally knows a lot of tricks.”

Murtagh, who is the oldest Irish champion, also plans to take Anderson and another of his stable’s fighters over to Malta for some quality sparring, including against the Maltese national heavyweight champion.

Murtagh added: “We were hoping to get Aidan’s debut in before Christmas and that would have been ideal.

“He was fighting away from home in Middlesbrough and there would have been no pressure but now he is fighting on a bigger show.

“We will have eight fights on the bill, topped by Tasif Khan, and we have two African fighters meeting each other.

“Not all boxers can challenge for a world title or become an Olympic champion but if we could get Aidan to build momentum, get some exposure on the Made In Leeds TV channel and to eventually challenge for an eight-round Bronze Masters title down the line that would be great.”

Anderson is also looking forward to his new debut date and added: “I had some time out of the gym due to working away but I have been back this week and I have seven weeks’ preparation. I will also have a lot more people going to watch this time.”

Anderson has also thanked sponsors Property Maintenance Plus, Window Doctors and J Overend Groundwortks Ltd.