Late stoppage lands Couzens title shot

Sam Couzens. Picture: Mick Young (124213-10)
Sam Couzens. Picture: Mick Young (124213-10)
Jack Bishop aged 21 in the Airborne Division

‘If ever I had a hero in my life then Jack was it’

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Sam Couzens has been handed a Southern Area title shot after kickstarting his career.

The Titchfield battler will take on Kelvin Young for the super-middleweight title after pulling off a shock stoppage over him in enemy territory.

Couzens travelled to Gloucester last month and delivered a victory with seconds remaining against his 12-2 opponent over four rounds.

Now he has agreed to a rematch in Swindon in September with Young’s belt on the line.

The win has introduced impetus into Couzens’ career and he is now determined to cash in on that.

He is targeting a second win against Young, who sparred with Carl Froch ahead of their last meeting, and feels that will pave the way for some big contests.

The fight has been earmarked to take place at the start of September.

So Couzens has pencilled in a tune-up contest next month as he heads into an intensive training camp.

The 27-year-old will be looking to avoid a banana skin there, before he goes into a match-up that could propel him into the top 10 of the domestic rankings.

Couzens said: ‘The date is up in the air at the moment but I’m going to fight for the Southern Area.

‘I’ve turned my career around in a couple of fights.

‘I’ve knocked him out and got right up the British rankings.

‘At the moment I’m 12th and when I win the Southern Area I don’t want to hang around.

‘I’ve got local rivals but the second I win that title I want to go after the big fish.

‘I want to go after the English title. I don’t like easy fights and I want to set my goals high.

‘They want the rematch and we’re happy to give them that.

‘It was going to be in July but he has been suspended because he got stopped and had concussion.

‘But it’s looking like the first week in September.

‘My manager and trainer want to get me a fight before as a tune-up.

‘So I’ll get a four-rounder under my belt to keep me fresh.’

The dramatic manner of Couzens’ win over Young was hard for his opponent to take last month.

There was just a second left of the contest when a fierce uppercut from the scrapper floored his rival.

The referee stepped in to wave the contest off, much to Young’s frustration.

Couzens expects his opponent to be wary of being on the receiving end of that shot again.

But he wants to be in top condition to outwork his rival.

Couzens said: ‘He said he knew there were no excuses for losing and I was dangerous with my uppercuts.

‘So I know he’s going to be looking out for that.

‘His trainer was shouting about it all the time, so they will be on the lookout for that.

‘I know he will be well prepared and try to let me not get too close to him.

‘We are going to have a nice long preparation for it.

‘I want the four-rounder to shake off the cobwebs.

‘I want to be super fit and ready for 10 hard rounds.’