McNess aiming to follow in stablemate Saunders’ steps

New world champion Billy Joe Saunders (centre) made his return to the West Ham gym where he was join

New world champion Billy Joe Saunders (centre) made his return to the West Ham gym where he was joined by a quartet of fighters who appear on next week's York Hall bill (from left) Archie Sharpe, Ben Smith, Sam McNess and Eddie Hussein - Credit: Archant

Youngster inspired by world champion

Sam McNess is looking forward to his third fight as a professional at York Hall on January 22, inspired by the success of his training partner, new world middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders.

Super-welterweight McNess trains alongside Saunders at the West Ham gym, with both fighters coached by the father-and-son duo Jimmy and Mark Tibbs.

And he joined his stable-mate in the Marbella training camp last year, where Saunders prepared for his December win over previous world champion Andy Lee.

McNess said: “It was a brilliant experience for me, I learnt so much in the two weeks I spent out there.


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“One day I hope to be in his shoes, so it was really inspiring being involved in a training camp for a world title fight.

“Everything Billy Joe did, I did. I stayed in his apartment with Jimmy Tibbs. We trained, ate and rested at the same time.

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“It was a real learning curve and I gained so much being in that environment.

“Billy Joe has done it the hard way. I hope he keeps that belt for as long as possible.”

McNess, son of former pro Steve McNess, looks ahead to his next bout with confidence, adding: “I have made a solid start to my pro career and I aim to really push on this year.”

The avid West Ham soccer fan, made an explosive debut last July when he stopped Aaron Robinson inside the first round of their contest.

And he followed that up with a points victory against Kevin McCauley at Harrow.

Also welcoming Saunders back to the Plaistow gym was unbeaten West Ham lightweight Eddie Hussein, plus two other prospects in the division, Ben Smith and Archie Sharp, who also appear at York Hall next week.

The Queensberry bill is topped by Ryan Walsh defending his British featherweight title against Darren Trayner and chief support sees Peacock gym stylist Ahmet Patterson facing Ryan Aston for the IBF super-welterweight championship.

Also in action on the show that will be screened on BoxNation TV are Lewis Pettit, Billy Long and DP Carr.

Fans of Jose Lopes and Wadi Camacho should aim to arrive at the O2 Arena early on Saturday to watch their supporting contests on the David Haye comeback show.

The show is due to start at 6pm with Camacho facing Czech rival Jindrich Velecky in the opening bout and Lopes next on against Sheffield’s Darren Snow.

Both cruiserweights look to launch their 2016 campaigns with good wins and former Peacock amateur Camacho looks for a good performance before his title bid scheduled in six weeks.

Former Prizefighter winner Camacho is due to face Kent rival Darren Woodgate for the vacant Southern Area cruiserweight belt at York Hall on February 27.

Haye’s return to action against Aussie Mark de Mori heads the Saturday show at the O2 which will be screened on the Dave TV channel.

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