Photos by Mark Jones
Chad ‘2 Slick’ Sugden showed another side to his boxing game at the Chase Leisure Centre in Cannock, with an emphatic win in what was widely described as the best fight on the card of the Danger Zone show on Sunday 24 July.
In only his third professional boxing contest, the 22 year-old from Nottingham defeated a game and very tough opponent in Christian Hoskin Gomez over six three-minute rounds.
“Most boxers would have chosen to pass on a fight against Christian but not Chad and not Suggy’s Gym,” said 2 Slick’s manager and head coach Dean Sugden. “We relish challenges like this and would much rather be tested now and learn from a fight than take on cannon fodder merely to pad out Chad’s record. He doesn’t need cannon fodder – he’s already established a reputation on the pro boxing circuit for his movement and angles and yesterday he showed that he can stand and bang with the best of them too.”
Going into the fight, Chad was prepared for a fast start from Christian and he got exactly what he was expecting. But he stuck to the game plan throughout, setting the pace, controlling all the exchanges and at same time sinking some heavy shots to the body.
The third round saw Chad unleashing some incredible shots which sent his opponent reeling. “But Christian kept coming straight back at him, almost as if he was attached to Chad by a bungee cord,” said Dean. “This pattern continued throughout the rounds, with Chad answering almost all of the exchanges and finishing on top, and at the final bell he looked confident, he knew he’d won.
“In the corner, we thought we might have drawn one of the rounds but didn’t feel we’d lost any of them. But the scores – 59-56 in Chad’s favour – reflected just how tough a fight it was.”
Back home with his record intact, Chad said: “Yes, it was a tough one but I really enjoyed it. I was tired but I felt I was stronger so I sat inside and pushed Christian back as we exchanged shots in the centre of the ring.
“He was relentless but he told me afterwards that I was the best he’d fought, even though he’s been in there with a top 10 boxer. He said the fact that my movement was so unpredictable caused him real problems and he was surprised how tough and strong I was for a technical boxer.
“He also told me that he can normally push the slick boxers back but not this time – and that at one point when he hit me flush, although I looked unfazed by it his hand was numb for the rest of the round!”
Among the top names from the boxing world in Cannock to see Chad perform were Matthew Macklin and Ricky Hatton, both of whom said they were extremely impressed with the Suggy’s Gym fighter. Chad has already been signed up for the card of Hatton’s next show on Saturday 24 September, when he returns to Walsall Town Hall where he made his pro debut in March.
“For this one, we’ll be facing the very experienced Dan Blackwell, who has recently been signed by Ricky Hatton and who’s gone the distance with both Callum Smith and Anthony Ogogo,” said Dean. “So another tough test in store for Chad but one which will be an invaluable opportunity for him to continue learning his trade as he makes his way to the top.”
Tickets for the September fight will be on sale from Suggy’s Gym within the next few weeks, priced £60 VIP ringside and £30 standard unreserved, with transport for local fans available on a first come, first served basis at £15 per person.