Disappointment rapidly turned to delight for Newark boxer Jade Grierson last week when, after learning of the cancellation of her upcoming professional debut on Stefy Bull’s New Beginnings show in Doncaster, she was immediately offered the chance to walk out into the ring for a Special Exhibition Contest on the same card.
“Despite all our efforts, Stefy and I were unable to secure an opponent for Jade in time for the show on Saturday 22 October and for a while it looked as if she’d have to focus on the possibility of waiting till sometime in November or December to make her pro debut,” said her manager, Suggy’s Gym’s Dean Sugden.
“But two-time World Champion Terri Harper, someone Jade really admires, stepped up to save the day and 100 Newarkers, including Jade’s baby daughter Amani, were at the Legacy Conference Centre to witness a contest that more than lived up to its name.
“Jade and Terri, who herself has a huge following, were in amazing shape as they reminded each other that there was some artillery coming their way. It was clear they both wanted to put on a show and from start to finish there was never a dull moment as they each tried to take control of the action, with some really eye-catching shots that had the crowd on its feet.
“Although we were told in advance to keep the news low profile, this sold-out show in such a great venue was without a doubt the perfect setting for a very special pro debut that will have raised Jade’s profile massively.
“On Saturday night the boxing world realised it had a new star in the making, performing against none other than the two-time world champion Terri, and we have to say a huge thank you to Stefy for making it happen.”
“What a pro debut that was – not many people can say they shared the ring with a two-time world champ for their first professional experience but here we are, not shying away from anyone,” said Jade.
“With the whole crowd singing “Brown girl in the ring” to welcome me onto the scene, the support from everyone was absolutely fantastic, especially given the fact that the show was taking place in Terri’s hometown.
“And although I’m already looking forward to having a real go at it on Sunday 11 December, when I’ll be walking out into the ring at Rotherham Magna Centre, I just loved every minute of the contest on Saturday – and it was even better experiencing it with Amani on my hip, quite literally!”
“Jade has trained with me since the age of seven and I am delighted that she is now not only a professional boxer at a time when female boxing has never been bigger but is also delivering sessions for kids at Suggy’s Gym and going into local schools to deliver enrichment sessions on our behalf too,” added Dean.
“Right now, she’s already back on it as far as training is concerned and we’ll have more details of that December fight very soon. In the meantime, she’s looking forward to another special event, when she’ll be heading over to the Utilita Arena in Sheffield on Friday 11 November as a guest invited to see Sunny Edwards defend his IBF World Flyweight Title against Felix Alvarado.”
Featured image and fight photos above by Ryan Marsden, Steel Stream Design