Knuckles BKB promoter and Lacey’s Gym coach Seamus Devlin is stepping out of retirement to save his show.
The two-time English UBBF champion had signed off with success when stopping Mikey McGowan at Colne Municipal Hall in May.
But circumstances have since changed. The decomposition of September’s fight card had fashioned an aching cavity as four of the six scheduled bareknuckle bouts fell by the wayside.
Unbeaten MMA fighter Aaron Cottam was one of those who was forced to sit this one out at Colne Muni, leaving Doncaster’s Phil Hartley without an opponent.
Speaking about his comeback, Seamus said: “Retirement didn’t last long. I’ve been training very hard recently.
“I hadn’t planned to come back for this show, but we’d had a lot of people pull out. The bareknuckle fights went from six down to two. We wanted to juice it up a bit.
“Phil Hartley had put in a full nine-week camp, but his opponent pulled out. I didn’t want all his hard work to go to waste so I’ve stepped in to fight him. We’re both the same weight so it made sense.
“I know quite a bit about him, I’ve seen his training videos, I know a little bit about his history, his height, age and weight, and that’s all I need to know. He’s getting put away on September 6th.”
The 30-year-old had been struggling with a hand injury himself, one that had restricted the use of his back hand in bouts against Chris Wheeldon and McGowan.
However, a period of rest and recovery has been a blessing for Seamus, allowing the pain, stiffness and swelling in his joints to heal.
The light-middleweight had been struggling to clench his fist for a spell, but a return to training has re-energised his thirst for the sport.
“I still want a few big domestic titles, a few big names on my resume,” he said. “There’s still a bit of ground that I haven’t ventured yet. Once I’ve done that then I’ll retire happily.
“I want an international name, either bringing somebody over here or me travelling over there, an Italian, an American, then I’d be happy.
“It’s going to be hard balancing everything, but I’ve got a good two or three years left in me yet. I’m feeling good, I’m feeling sharp, I’ll be on point. I’ve done hundreds of rounds sparring, I’ve done all the road work, I’m 100% ready.
“I’ll be more offensive, on the front foot, there’ll be more weight on the front leg. I’ll be stepping on it more. I’m good to go.”