San­ders is re­turn­ing to chase world glory

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Sports - By BOB FRENCH bob/

LO­CAL box­ing leg­end Kevin San­ders is back.

Af­ter re­tir­ing from pro­fes­sional box­ing two years ago, the 54 yearold trainer from Or­ton Longueville has been lured back into the sport by a lu­cra­tive of­fer from a Sh­effield­based pro­moter.

San­ders, who achieved ev­ery hon­our there was go­ing dur­ing an il­lus­tri­ous 30-year ca­reer, is to team up with Dennis Hob­son, the York­shire­based pro­moter who worked with Ricky ‘Hit­man’ Hat­ton.

San­ders has been asked to look af­ter ex­cit­ing ban­tamweight prospect Jamie Mcdonnell from Don­caster, who will start work with his new trainer at the Fit­ness Sta­tion Gym in Dogsthorpe Road early next month.

Mcdonnell is the reign­ing Bri­tish, Com­mon­wealth and Euro­pean cham­pion and San­ders’ job is to take him to the next level and make him a world cham­pion.

Mcdonnell has a record of 18 wins and a draw from 21 con­tests and will de­fend his Euro­pean crown in Don­caster on March 10 against French­man Ma­lik Bouziane.

“Jamie is a very ac­com­plished fighter. He’s got every­thing. He can box and he’s a puncher but just needs to be taught a few more things to take him up to world ti­tle level,” said San­ders.

“I’ve got to get him there and I am con­fi­dent I can do it. We’ll start work to­gether early in Jan­uary, ini­tially in Peter­bor­ough and take it from there.

“Dennis Hob­son looked at loads of train­ers to do the job, but at the end of the day ap­proached me and that’s flat­ter­ing.

“It all hap­pened a cou­ple of weeks ago when I was in Las Ve­gas for the World Box­ing Coun­cil congress. Dennis and Jamie were there and I did a bit of work on the pads with Jamie.

“They both liked what they saw of me and I liked the look of Jamie. Dennis then made me an of­fer I couldn’t refuse so here I am back in busi­ness.

“I en­joyed the two-year break, but now I can’t wait to get back into it. I put on a few stones so it’ll be nice to get back in the gym and get my weight down a bit.

“I had many, many of­fers to re­turn, but this one re­ally stood out and was the only of­fer to tempt me to come back.

“At the mo­ment it’s just one boxer un­der my wing, but who knows what will hap­pen. I think Matt Skel­ton would love to fight again so that’s some­thing else I might get into.”

San­ders took Skel­ton to Bri­tish, Com­mon­wealth, Euro­pean and world (WBU) heavy­weight ti­tle glory and was in­volved in 40 ti­tle fights - win­ning 30 of them.

Peter­bor­ough’s Gary De Roux was his first ti­tle suc­cess when he won the Bri­tish feath­er­weight crown in 1991 and soon af­ter San­ders’ ca­reer re­ally took off when he was hired as Nigel Benn’s trainer and guided him through four world ti­tle wins.

HOP­ING FOR MORE NIGHTS LIKE THIS: Kevin San­ders (far right) cel­e­brates Matt Skel­ton’s Com­mon­wealth heavy­weight ti­tle win over Danny Wil­liams.

MAK­ING A COME­BACK: Kevin San­ders.

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