Ahead of KM Promotions’ show in Gloucester Tonight, we look behind the scenes of a fight day and night Swindon promoter Keith Mayo

Swindon promoter Keith Mayo

Swindon promoter Keith Mayo

First published in Sport Swindon Advertiser: Photograph of the Author by , Sports reporter

WHEN planning to go to the boxing, most people’s biggest dilemma is where to sit and what to wear.

Even the fighters know before stepping into the ring, their biggest issue is making sure that they have got their kit.

Of course, without the boxers their would be no sport, but without the people who put the shows together there would be no platform for the pugilistics to showcase there talents.

Now for the big time promoters like Matchroom and Golden Boy, they have their army of workers who help ensure that the show goes on without a hitch.

But what about the small hall men. The promoters who keep the bread and butter of the sweet science alive?

Greenbridge promoter Keith Mayo will stage his second show of the year under his KM Promotions banner at the GL1 Leisure Centre in Gloucester.

The show includes a British Masters light-welterweight title bout for hometown fighter Darren Carter against Andy Keates, as well as Swindon-based light-heavyweight Tariq Quaddus, who faces Telford’s Kieran Gray.

At his first show of the year at the Oasis Leisure Centre there were no titles on the line and it was only a small affair with five bouts as Penhill’s IBO super-middleweight intercontinental champion Kelvin Young topped the bill.

But just because it was a low key affair it doesn’t make it any the less stressful for Mayo, who works full-time at his garage in Greenbridge.

With no official weigh-ins required the night before, although Young and his opponent Tomas Kugler did at the Moonrakers in Penhill, you’d think it would be a little easier.

Try telling that to Mayo when he was up at 5.30am on the big day down at a supermarket making sure that there was enough bottled water for the dressing rooms.

Yet even though there were less than 12 hours before the doors opened at the Oasis there were still problems for the Greenbridge-based promoter with the chief support to Young’s main event hanging in the balance.

“At around 8.15am I had got a message from the (British Boxing) Board (of Control) to say that they needed Ricky Pow’s medical documentation and licence translated into English,” Mayo explained.

“So I had to get hold of Ricky so that he could get in touch with his sister back in Spain.

“We had to get her to get in touch with the Spanish Boxing Board so that it could all be translated into English and stamped so that he would be eligible to fight.

“At 1.30pm I had another call from the board to say Jason Nesbitt (who faced Ryan Martin) could only fight two-minute rounds and that they were still waiting for Ricky’s documents.

“Finally at 4.15pm I got the call from the board to say that they’d received Ricky’s papers and that he was good to fight.”

But far from sitting around waiting for Alicante-based Pow’s papers to arrive in Cardiff, Mayo was here, there and everywhere including spending time with Czech Republic fighters Tomas Kugler and Josef Obselo.

“Because they came over to fight, as a promoter you have to make sure that they are being looked after,” Mayo said. “I went over to their hotel had some lunch with them but before that I’d been over to the Oasis to take down the banners and they also needed a copy of my public liability insurance certificate.

“I finally got home for a quick shower at 4.30 before heading back to the Oasis.”

With the doors opening at 6.30pm, Mayo didn’t stop as all the fighters had to weigh-in at 5, the security staff needed to be briefed and the changing rooms had to be sorted for all the boxers.

The action finally got underway at 8pm, but even then he could not relax as Mayo was in and out of the dressing rooms to keep an eye on eyveryone and everything.

With two-and-a-half hours of action, which saw wins for all of Mayo’s boxers – except Pow who suffered a deep cut in the first round with Obselo and had to settle for a technical draw – the promoter was finally able to start to relax.

“It was a stressful night, but having done 24 show now, you get used to it,” Mayo said. “You are pleased when it all goes to plan and then you can relax after it is all.

“In between the fights I was back and forth to the dressing rooms to make sure everyone was where they need to be.

“The following day you can reflection on what happened, we got the right results, barring Ricky’s head clash, but that is boxing, it happens.

“Every show you encounter problems, even when they are small one, so to get through, makes all the stress worth while.”

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