Win - or else!’ warns Tony’s trainer

FORMER British, WBU and Commonwealth champion Tony Oakey gets a special ultimatum from his TKO Gym trainer Johnny Eames as he prepares for the Prizefighter tournament at York Hall, Bethnal Green, on February 20, when the light-heavyweights will get their

FORMER British, WBU and Commonwealth champion Tony Oakey gets a special ultimatum from his TKO Gym trainer Johnny Eames as he prepares for the Prizefighter tournament at York Hall, Bethnal Green, on February 20, when the light-heavyweights will get their chance to take home the big money prizes.

This will be the fifth Prizefighter event staged by Barry Hearn's Matchroom group and the format of three-round contests again looks a winner, with a sell-out audience expected and all the action screened live on Sky Sports.

There will be four quarter-finals, two semi-finals and a final all in one action-packed three hours with the last man standing collecting the �25,000 top prize.

Oakey has his eyes firmly set on that prize - and trainer Eames has given his fighter a straight 'win - or else!' warning.


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"I have told Tony that he will not be allowed back in the Ultrachem TKO Gym if he does not win the Prizefighter event," growled the successful Newham trainer.

Another useful fighter in the light-heavy line-up is former Repton amateur title winner Courtney Fry, an ex-Olympic boxer and former Commonwealth Games gold medal winner.

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Fry has a useful pro record with just a single defeat suffered during 13 fights in his six-year stop-start career.

Another popular entry will be Steve Spartacus, a seasoned campaigner trained by Tony Sims at the TBS Promotions' Wanstead gym, a crowd-pleaser who has won English and British Masters light-heavyweight title triumphs on his record.

Oakey will look to bounce back a winner at the York Hall event, after suffering defeats in his last three contests, including a British title showdown with Spartacus in a tough 12-round battle fought at the ExCel Arena in Docklands.

There have already been two Prizefighter tournaments at heavyweight with further events also at welterweight and middleweight. A Prizefighter competition at lightweight is also scheduled to take place on Tuesday, March 24.

A good performance in Prizefighter can change a boxer's life. Martin Rogan, the winner of the first Prizefighter Heavyweight, was struggling to find fights and was close to hanging up his gloves before taking part in the inaugural competition.

Now, after successfully winning Prizefighter in April, he has since beaten former Olympic Games gold medallist Audley Harrison and next meets Matt Skelton for the Commonwealth Heavyweight Championship in February.

As in previous Prizefighter tournaments, there will be two reserves on standby - former Commonwealth titleholder Ovill McKenzie and Ryan Walls, former WBF International champion.

Tickets for the Prizefighter tournament at York Hall are available by calling Matchroom Sport on 01277 359900.

* TKO gym fighter Michael Grant did not produce his Sunday best form, but did enough to take a one-point decision over classy French rival Christophe Sebire on the Hayemaker promotion at York Hall on Sunday afternoon.

Manager, Ultrachem TKO Gym boss Johnny Eames, was angry that his fighter did not reveal he had been troubled by a virus condition before the fight with the bustling Frenchman, who was certainly no soft touch.

The six-round points verdict from referee Bob Williams showed Grant had maintained his unbeaten record by a single point but his bruised features were proof he had been in a hard fight.

Second TKO fighter on the Hayemaker promotions bill, light-middleweight Pat McAleese punched out his latest win against Northampton's Vince Byron.

McAleese earned the cheers of his large-sized fan-following as he slammed home powerful shots all through the four-round contest against a game, but outgunned opponent.

It was the TKO Gym fighter's fourth straight victory - all at York Hall.

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