Thursday, February 7, 2013
After nearly 40 years in the boxing business, east Londoner Johnny Eames admits he is really excited about the launch of his new promotional company – Showtime Sports Events Limited – boasting big-time backers and big-time ambitions at home and abroad.
Eames and Gianluca (Rio) Di Caro, partners at Canning Town’s famous London fight factory Trad TKO Boxing, are the men behind the new group, and plan a big opening night with their first major event in Abu Dhabi, probably in April.
They aim to stage a multi-title bill with WBA world welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi defending his crown against Argentina’s Diego Gabriel Chaves.
Eames, who started his career as a teenager at Stepney’s Broad Street BC before coaching at West Ham BC, has spent the past 15 years in pro boxing and takes a swipe at promoters as he insists he will give the boxers a better chance.
“After working off broken promises from certain promoters and letting boys down through no fault of my own, I’m finally in a position where I can give promises I know I can keep,” he said.
“Our aim is to promote the biggest and best events we can. We have a vast amount of funds allocated to us to pull in the biggest fighters, not just for the Abu Dhabi and the Middle East project, but also for shows we are putting on in Great Britain.
“The hard work that Gianluca, as well as our partners, have put in over the past year to make this all come together has finally paid off,” added Eames.
“It’s going to be huge, it’s really exciting to be part of it. It’s an honour to be working with His Royal Highness Sheikh Khaled Bin Mohammed Al Qassimi and His Excellency Khaled Abdulla Al Mansoori, and we will not let them down,” vowed the TKO Gym boss who received a special British Boxing Board of Control annual award last year.
Gianluca Di Caro added: “We are particularly pleased to have the WBF involved in this project and the opening event also features five further proposed Championship bouts.
“These include WBF super-middleweight world champion Marco Antonio Rubio from Mexico, challenging current WBF champion Vitaliy Kopylenko from Ukraine.”
Another proposed title bout features a fighter who has been based at the Trad TKO Gym – former British and IBO world champion Colin Lynes – who is due to face Poland’s EBU-EU champion Rafal Jackiewicz for the vacant WBF inter-continental welterweight title.
The fight could bring a new lease of life to the career of 35-year-old Whitechapel-born Lynes, with the victor getting the chance to challenge the winner of the Malignaggi-Chaves contest for the WBF world crown later in the year.