Marsh vows to step up at lower weight

PUBLISHED: 17:37 26 June 2008 | UPDATED: 13:23 05 October 2010

MATTHEW Marsh insists he has learned from his first pro defeat and does not contemplate a similar setback when he bids for the British super bantamweight title on Friday night. Marsh, from east London s TKO Gym, faces reigning champion Esham Pickering at

MATTHEW Marsh insists he has learned from his first pro defeat and does not contemplate a

similar setback when he bids for the British super bantamweight title on Friday night.

Marsh, from east London's TKO Gym, faces reigning champion Esham Pickering at York Hall just eight months after relinquishing his unbeaten record to Liverpool's Derry Matthews.

The 25-year-old stepped up a division for the WBU world featherweight title fight with Matthews only to suffer his first professional defeat after eight straight wins.

But Marsh is happy to be fighting back at super bantamweight and believes he is ready to secure the first major title of his pro career.

"I took the fight [against Matthews] because it was a good opportunity but it wasn't my natural weight and he was way too big for me," said Marsh, a former amateur star with West Ham boxing club.

"But I've come back since with a first-round knockout of Ajibu Salum and I feel ready for this chance now."

Pickering, from Newark, will make the second defence of the British crown and is out to prove his critics wrong.

He said: "People are saying I can't do what I used to but I'm fitter than I've ever been now and I'm treating it as the most important fight of my life."

Friday's meeting also provides action for local trio George Hillyard, Daniel Herdman and Dwayne Lewis, who will be fighting on the undercard at the Bethnal Green venue.

For Canning Town duo Hillyard and Lewis, it is the first action of the year and both will be looking to maintain winning form.

Hard-hitting light middleweight Hillyard has bounced back from two successive defeats to chalk up three wins and a draw in his last four fights under coach Tony Sims.

Former Repton amateur international Herdman, who has recorded two wins since dropping the verdict on his pro debut, is also a member of the TBS promotions squad.

Super middleweight Lewis has two straight wins since drawing his first professional contest against veteran Nick Okoth and seeks to maintain that form against Sheffield's Dean Walker.

Also in supporting bout action on the bill are Lenny Daws, John O'Donnell, Lee Purdy and Gareth Couch.

For tickets contact the Hennessy Sports box office on 0870 060 1795.

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