Jon’s coming home

Norwich's Jon Thaxton will fight in his home city for the first time in 18 months when he makes the first defence of his British Lightweight Title against Scott Lawton on Friday, March 16.

Norwich's Jon Thaxton will fight in his home city for the first time in 18 months when he makes the first defence of his British Lightweight Title against Scott Lawton on Friday, March 16.

The pair will square off on a Hennessy Sports promotion at the Norfolk Showground, which will be playing host to professional boxing for the very first time in an event to be shown live on Sky Sports.

“I'm coming home,” said the 32-year-old Thaxton yesterday. “It's been a long time since I boxed in Norwich, so I'm really excited about it. I don't mind boxing away - sometimes it takes you out of that comfort zone - but it's always good to come back.

“I always know that my fans will turn out to support me, they are very loyal and I love them for it. They always generate a good atmosphere and that never fails to lift me.

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“It gives me that extra 20 or 30 percent. I am determined to go out there and deliver. I am determined to go out there, give my best and keep the British title in Norwich now that I have finally won it.”

Thaxton claimed the British title when out-pointing Lee Meager last December after putting in one of the performances of his career.

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“I definitely put that up there as one of my best fights,” he added. “People saw that as a 50-50 match, which was good for me. I didn't see it like that, but people couldn't split us.

“I was very confident going in and I performed on the night, but Meager put up an excellent fight. He was very tough. He can definitely come again and be a champion if he has the right attitude, I am sure of that. Look at me; I have been beat seven times. It's all about learning.”

Thaxton expects another hard - though very different - night's work against Lawton.

“He deserves his chance,” said the father of two, continued. “I think he would have been made my next mandatory anyway. This is going to be his world title fight - he is going to be so up for it.

“Lawton is going to put in the performance of his life; he will prove a very stiff challenge. He's a good boxer and he's very tall: just under 6ft, so it's going to be a very different fight from Lee. This will be a case of me being a hell of a lot more aggressive and letting my power do the work.

“He's going to be full of confidence. So am I. I know that given where I am right now, with my fitness and experience, that it's gonna take someone special to beat me and I can't see Scott Lawton doing that. But I don't underestimate anyone. I'm preparing for King Kong.”

The event, tagged 'Showdowns @ The Showground' by the promoters, will also feature a fight for the vacant British super bantamweight crown between former British, Commonwealth and European champion Esham Pickering and Marc Callaghan.

Also on the bill will be Norfolk fighters Sam Sexton, Danny McIntosh and Paul Davis as well as Ipswich's Steve Spartacus and light welterweight debutante Leonard Lothian.

Tickets priced at £25, £35, £50 and £100 are on sale now from Sportlink on 01603 868 606 or 01603 869 051.

Fight list

British Lightweight Championship (12x3): Jon Thaxton (Norwich) v Scott Lawton (Stoke).

British Super Bantamweight Championship (12x3): Esham Pickering (Newark) v Marc Callaghan (Barking).

Light heavyweight (6x3): Spartacus (Ipswich) v Ayittey Powers (Ghana).

Heavyweight (6x3): Sam Sexton (Norwich) v TBA.

Super middleweight (6x3): Danny McIntosh (Norwich) v TBA.

Light heavyweight (4x3): Paul Davis (Norwich) v Omid Burzo (Tehran).

Light welterweight: Leonard Lothian (Northampton) v TBA

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