Hammer McNess ready for pro boxing debut

On Friday 12 June, boxer Sam McNess will make his professional debut at York Hall in Bethnal Green.
Sam McNess, the son of former professional boxer Steve McNess, will go head to head with Hull resident Paul O’Brien in his first ever professional fight on Friday 12 June.

It will be an exciting evening for the West Ham United fan who is fighting in the same ring that his father fought in four times before. 

“I started boxing when I was nine years old” said McNess. “My Dad turned professional around the time that I was born so I’ve always been in and around the boxing environment my whole life. I’ve had around 85 amateur fights, won five or six national titles and have represented Great Britain over 20 times.

“I was in the Team GB group around the time of the 2012 London Olympics but I was a little too young to be involved. 

“I learnt so much from the team and looked to get myself into the most recent Commonwealth Games team but I was a little unlucky to be left out. That’s when I made my decision to turn professional.

“I’ve always thought that my style suits professional boxing. At the age of 23, I now feel that the time is right to launch my professional boxing career.”

In the lead up to his big debut fight, McNess has been training under the guidance of Mark and Jimmy Tibbs at the West Ham Boys Amateur Boxing Club in Plaistow. 

“Where better to learn about boxing for a West Ham fan then the West Ham Boys Amateur Boxing Club? There’s so much history like Nigel Benn training here when he was at the top of his game. 

“Being in the company of Jimmy and Mark Tibbs too is a massive benefit. I don’t think that I could be with better trainers.”

A confident McNess insisted he knows what he needs to do when he steps into the ring and is already looking to a bright future.

“I’ve had a little look at him recently and seen that he has had around nine fights so far and doesn’t lose often so it will good experience for me. 

“I’m under my weight and my training has been going really well. When it comes to the fight, I need to listen to my corner and enjoy my professional debut because it’s a moment that I’ve been longing for. 

With the fight rapidly approaching, McNess is hoping for to garner support from Hammers fans and is already hoping to compete in the Club’s fantastic new Stadium. 

“It will be really nice to see all my friends and family down at York Hall. When you’re fighting in countries like China or Kazakhstan, it’s usually just you and the team. Having a local crowd behind me will really help. 

“I’ve not boxed in London for two years now so it will be nice to be back home and able to show everyone the hard work I’ve been putting in.

“Having the support from West Ham United really helps because I remember in May 2010 when Kevin Mitchell fought Michael Katsidis at Upton Park. I was at that fight and it is a dream of mine to represent the Hammers in front of thousands of fans. 

“I remember during that fight when the Hammers fans where singing ‘I’m Forever Blowing Bubble’ to him and that must’ve given him such an adrenaline boost. I’ve been obsessed about football and West Ham from a young age and really appreciate the club’s support.

“When I step into the ring on Friday, I’d love to see a number of Hammers fans out there cheering me on. I’ve had my ring gear made for me by my sponsors Magri Sports and they will feature the claret and blue colours with little hammers on them. I know the club will be with me on the night.

“All I can say to all the West Ham fans out there is that if they fancy a good night out to cheer on a fellow Hammers fan then I’d really appreciate it and look forward to seeing you there!”

Tickets for the event at York Hall, Bethnal Green are priced at £41.50 and available through his official website - www.sammcness.com