Sheffield v Doncaster boxing derby looms

Razaq Najib celebrates victory over Luke Fash. Pic By James Williamson
Razaq Najib celebrates victory over Luke Fash. Pic By James Williamson
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Boxing managers are pitting together two of their young unbeaten prospects in a derby scrap - knowing that the loser will take a backward step at an important time in their development.

Sheffield’s Razaq Najib takes on Doncaster’s Tom Bell in a six rounder at Sheffield City Hall, on an April 30th bill led by Muheeb Fazeldin and Sam Sheedy.

Tom Bell and team

Tom Bell and team

Super bantamweights Najb and Bell are both managed by Dennis Hobson’s promotional firm and are undefeated.

Bell, 19, has two wins, having turned professional last October.

Najib, two years older, has five wins to his credit.

Spokesman Chris Smedley said: “We want to put on entertaining 50-50 fights - not some of the stuff we see on TV. Look at Jamie McDonnell and Antony Joshua’s last opponents.

“People buying tickets for shows want to see proper fights - boxers prepared to go into battle.

“Razaq and Tom are just that, it says a lot about their character that they are fighting each other at this stage.

“Tom has only had two fights and he’d fight anybody!

“Whoever wins will make progress obviously, a little faster than the other.

“But it doesn’t mean the fighter who lost can’t learn from it and come back stronger” said Smedley.

Bell is trained by Dave Hulley at Doncaster and Najib by Keith Palmer at Sheffield Lane Top.

Razaq’s cousin Majid Najib is also on the bill, as a debutant.

He is expected to face another Sheffielder, lightweight Ryan Hanson.

Hanson, a Glyn Rhodes fighter, may have a poor record but dropped three of his last four opponents.

Najib and Bell have twice boxed on the same Magna Centre bill, before, so will be no stranger to each other.

Also on the bill is promising Sheffield super-flyweight, Kyle Yousaf, 22.

He is protecting an unbeaten record of six fights dating back to February, last year.