Stuart Hall is promising Paul Butler he will be in the shape of his life when the pair clash at Newcastle’s Metro Radio Arena on June 7.
Hall puts his IBF world bantamweight title on the line when he makes the second defence of his belt against Ellesmere Port’s Butler, and the 34-year-old says training couldn’t be going better.
“I’m always in shape, but I’ve started sparring now so it’s all going to start clicking together,” explained Darlington’s Hall, who is trained by Michael Marsden.
“It’s all about peaking at the right time, and I’ll be 100 per cent when I walk in the ring. I can’t wait; I’ve never wanted a fight so much in all my career.”
Former British champion Hall claimed world honours after putting in a ‘fight of the year’ shift against South Africa’s Vusi Malinga last December. The North East man then made a successful first defence of his title against Commonwealth ruler Martin Ward in March, with the contest halted early after Ward suffered a gaping cut.
Rising star Butler has mostly campaigned at super-flyweight where he has earned rave reviews. The unbeaten 25-year-old has knocked out eight of 15 foes and heads into the biggest fight of his life full of confidence.
Hall and Butler have traded barbs ahead of the hugely-anticipated battle. Disputed versions of what happened at a previous sparring session, and claims by the Butler camp that the champion was reluctant to take the fight, have led to animosity between the pair. And ‘Stuey’ is convinced it will be pay-back time come fight-night.
“I’m over the moon it’s Paul Butler [in the opposite corner]. I can’t wait to get in the ring with him. He’s talking the talk, but he can say what he wants, I’ve heard it all before. He’s trying to get under my skin, saying I’ve got a chip on my shoulder, but I haven’t at all. He needs to watch what he’s saying on social media, he’s upset my family. It’s got a bit personal and it’s going to be a great fight because I can’t wait to shut him up.
“I can’t wait to have a fight with him,” reiterated Hall. “He says I’ve got one plan, to bully him for four rounds and I’ve got no ‘Plan B’. I’m going to bully him for 12 rounds! I just had a watch of the Malinga fight, and he’s going to be in for a shock because I’ve been there, seen it, done it.
“Once he finds his shots don’t do anything and I’m still on him; I know what’s going to happen in this fight. He’s trying to convince himself, but he doesn’t realise how hard I hit. He’s been getting it all his own way, but I’m just concentrating on myself for the next few weeks. One thing is sure though, I’ve never been so up for a fight.”
Stuart Hall defends his IBF world bantamweight title against Paul Butler at Newcastle’s Metro Radio Arena on June 7. The undercard for the show features Birtley’s British cruiserweight champion Jon-Lewis Dickinson taking on Commonwealth ruler Ovill McKenzie. Also appearing will be Sedgefield’s Bradley Saunders; Guisborough’s Josh Leather; County Durham’s Thomas Patrick Ward; Doncaster’s Dave Allen and Jason Cunningham; Sunderland’s Jordan King; Wales’ Rhys Evans, and Northumberland’s Lewis Scott.
Tickets are priced at £40, £60, £75, £150 and VIP £200 are available via Box Office 0844 493 6666 (VIP Packages 0114 243 4443) or from dennishobson.com