Boxer Luke Blackledge’s date at York Hall in jeopardy

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 10:  Callum Smith (L) of Liverpool in action against Luke Blackledge of Darwen during their British Super-Middleweight Championship fight at Manchester Arena on December 10, 2016 in Manchester, England.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 10: Callum Smith (L) of Liverpool in action against Luke Blackledge of Darwen during their British Super-Middleweight Championship fight at Manchester Arena on December 10, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

Luke Blackledge’s fight against Umar Sadiq is in jeopardy after a bout of food poisoning curtailed the former Commonwealth champion’s training camp.

The 29-year-old is pencilled in to face the Nigerian super-middleweight when Frank Warren and Queensbury Promotions return to York Hall on Saturday.

The Clitheroe boxer, who has been out-pointed by Chad Sugden and Ollie Pattison in his last two contests on the road, was expected to support a triple bill of title fights at the venue in Bethnal Green, with the action aired lived on BT Sport.

However, preparations have been hampered by illness and injury, meaning he has had very little time to get up to speed with coach Matt Bolton.

“The camp hasn’t been great,” he confirmed. “I was flying at one point, but then I sustained a shoulder injury, I had tennis elbow and then I had two bouts of food poisoning. I haven’t had the time to recover properly. It’s nasty, I felt awful and I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. I was ill for about 10 days and I’ve only been able to train for the past two weeks.”

Sunny Edwards will make the drop down to flyweight to face Mexican Hugo Rosendo Guarneros for the vacant IBF International title, Brad Foster makes the second defence of his British super bantamweight crown against Lucien Reid while unbeaten Shakan Pitters is the challenger as Dec Spelman looks to protect his English light-heavyweight championship.

The show will also feature the British light-heavyweight title eliminator between Zak Chelli and Kody Davies.

“It’s a very good TV bill,” said Blackledge. “There are some really good fights on the card. However, I’ve not fought in eight weeks and haven’t trained properly so I don’t want to risk getting battered. I’m in two minds at the moment.

“I’ve lost a lot of weight and I have no energy. I could smash this kid to pieces if I was fully fit. He’s only had seven fights and he doesn’t like fighting in the pocket like I do. I’ll just have to see how I feel when it comes to Friday’s weigh in.”

Meanwhile, Blackledge revealed that taking to the road to find better opportunities in the sport is nothing new to him.

The one-time British title challenger has always lived a nomadic career, constantly travelling around the country to add to his resume while appearing in Denmark on three occasions during his 37 bout tenure.

“I always get asked ‘are you going there to win?’ Of course I’m going in to a fight to win it. Just because I’m fighting on the road doesn’t mean I’m going to roll over.

“I’ve always fought away from home. This is no different to me. I just want to stay active and fight consistently. Selling tickets on a home show was a nightmare so I’m spared that stress.

“You’ve got to win well on the road if you’re going to get a decision, but it’s not impossible. I’ve done it a few times.”