Stars turn out to support launch of BOXXER grassroots initiative

03/23/2023 - No comments

BOXXER, the next generation boxing promotion, today announced its plans to inspire thousands of youngsters across the country to take up boxing with a new long-term commitment to support the core grassroots foundations of the sport.

Working closely with charities across the UK, including Manchester-based Maverick Stars Trust, and England Boxing, BOXXER aims to remove entry barriers to boxing and impact positive changes to enhance opportunities for the next generation.

As part of its pledge, BOXXER will now:

– Work with regional leaders to make its events as accessible as possible to aspiring young amateur boxers. This includes affordable tickets and charitable donations to underprivileged young boxers from hard to reach communities.
– Provide exclusive access to affordable tickets to England Boxing affiliated clubs and gyms
– Host roadshows and workshops across the country for young kids and adults in the community throughout its schedule
– Help offer vital equipment and kit to aspiring amateur fighters – supported by a host of existing partners to BOXXER.

The news comes as BOXXER was joined by over 50 young girls and boys at Walkden ABC in an event supported by Maverick Stars for a fun-filled masterclass packed with punches and surprises, ahead of its March 25 Fight Night at Manchester’s AO Arena.

Across two special sessions this evening in Manchester, expert training was delivered by local legend and former WBA world lightweight champion Anthony Crolla alongside fellow Mancunian boxing great and former WBA super-bantamweight king Scott Quigg.

And the youngsters were treated to more special appearances too, headed by WBO world cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie ahead of his upcoming title defence this Saturday against David Light.

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World super-lightweight title challenger Jack Catterall was there too along with Olympic heroes Lauren Price MBE and Karriss Artintgstall – who fights this Saturday, live on Sky Sports.

Courtesy of BOXXER’s official partner Everlast, boys and girls in attendance were each treated to a pair of Everlast boxing gloves and before enjoying photographs with their boxing idols.

Cruiserweight world champion Lawrence Okolie, who defends his title in Manchester this weekend in the headline bout of the BOXXER event airing live on Sky Sports, noted the important role of accessibility in boxing.

“I didn’t have good role models in my life until I started going to the youth clubs and encountered boxing. We see footballers, we see race-car drivers doing all these amazing things. But they aren’t accessible, you can’t reach them, whereas boxers are much more accessible and so these kids can meet you and realise that you’re just human. And for me it’s energising to come to things like this and meet all the young people, it gives me a great feeling,” he said.

Lauren Price MBE, a gold medalist for Great Britain at the 2020 Olympic Games, was impressed by the number of girls in the training room today, seeing it as a sign of the sport’s growing inclusiveness.

“When I started out I was the only girl at my club, so when I look around here today and see so many girls it’s amazing. We’ve seen a massive increase in girls participating ever since the London 2012 Olympics and today there’s so much amateur talent on the pathway coming through. You can see it at all the competitions and across the weight categories, it’s great to see,” she said.

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2012 bronze medalist Karriss Artingstall lauded the significance of donations to grassroots boxing projects.

“It’s so important to get support at the grassroots levels with donations of boxing gloves and other equipment, anything which improves access. Boxing is a lot less expensive than some other sports but the equipment still costs money. A lot of coaches don’t even make money from coaching, they just do it for the love of the sport, so donations help to keep these clubs going,” she said.

BOXXER CEO & Founder Ben Shalom said: “My love for boxing started right here in Manchester. And it is important for BOXXER to impact positive changes on the sport.

“We want to put on the biggest fights and the biggest shows on Sky Sports and around the world. Most of all, we want to provide an everlasting legacy for the next generation here in the UK.

“This is just the start of a concerted campaign that will include us working with multiple stakeholders on a thought leadership programme to discuss and propose high level reforms to improve the governance of the sport.

The activation in Manchester provides the springboard for a long-term commitment from BOXXER to removing any possible entry barriers and help bridge the gap between amateur and elite, professional boxing – kickstarted by supporting the life and soul of the sport: grassroots.

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Ben Shalom added: “Our goal from day one has been to improve all aspects of Boxing. We are committed to aiding accessibility, promoting inclusivity and embracing affordability, which is absolutely crucial in these difficult economic times for families across the UK.

“Our fighters can be positive role models in their communities and across the country – and that boxing can be a force for good against some of the evils that are so commonplace in today’s society, such as anti-social behaviour on the streets.

“Gyms like this can be a safe haven for young kids and adults alike. And they are the places where our passion and love for the sport can begin.”

Charlotte Gilley MBE, Founder and Trustee of Maverick Stars Trust, said: “It’s fantastic that BOXXER share our vision for providing opportunities for people from all walks of life to prosper through boxing.

“Our initiatives encourage young people, the vulnerable and those at risk of crime, to change their lives for the better and pursue their dreams. Projects such as ‘Sting Like a Bee’ and ‘Fit and Fed’, started in Greater Manchester but due to their success, they are now delivered at our partner boxing clubs nationwide.

“It’s very exciting that we can now link up with a briliant, young promotional team in BOXXER and help even more people to get fit, active and inspired to succeed.”

For more details about BOXXER’s March 25 Fight Night, visit