Saturday 28th November 2015
Bethnal Green, London
Henry Blanchard (Eng) Vs Danny Bent (Eng)
Sean Mooney (Can) Vs Paul JD Roberts (Eng)
Matt “Crazy Arms” Read (Eng) Vs Liam “Yogi” Macpherson (Sco)
WCBA LIGHTWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP TITLE
Dymer Agasaryan (Arm) V Guram Guberidze (Geo)
Guram Guberidze is a 26 year old business studies graduate from Tbilisi in Georgia. He took up martial arts to deal with getting picked on at school due to his slight build and lack of height. He started out as a kickboxer and by the age of 14 had learned enough to keep the bullies at bay. Protective parents prevented him from competing until he left home when he built up an impressive record of 9 wins from 9 bouts. He began playing chess as a ten year old and quickly realised a passion for the game – which he claims has many similarities with kick-boxing. He has taken up formal boxing this year in preparation for his bout with Dymer Agasaryan and says he is determined to return to Georgia with the World Title Belt.
Dymer Agasaryan is one of the more experienced chessboxers on the circuit and certainly one of the most accomplished having secured World Titles in both the middle-weight and lightweight divisions. He narrowly missed out on adding a third crown to his collection in a tight welterweight contest against veteran IBF world champion Terry Marsh in June this year. Now Agasaryan, originally from Armenia but fighting out of Stratford in east-London, is determined to flush the memory of that defeat with a return to winning ways.
Henry Blanchard Vs Danny Bent
Author and adventurer Danny Bent, voted one of the 100 happiest people in UK by The Independent on Sunday, will be familiar to viewers of BBC3’s “Special Forces: Ultimate Hell Week” as one of the show’s final three contestants. Now, after undergoing the kind of physical and mental challenges that most people only experience on their worst nightmares, he’s back in the Chessboxing arena aiming to overturn the defeat he suffered at the Scala in March 2015.
His opponent in this return rubber is Henry Blanchard, a former City trader who quit his job two years ago to launch the Ugandan Marathon. Now in its second year it is already one of the biggest marathon events in Africa. And who doesn’t remember THAT pre-fight interview from the last battle?! Two massive characters; one heck of a contest!
Sean Mooney Vs Paul JD Roberts
Sean Mooney is a former Ivy League student-athlete who aspired to play football professionally after graduating. Unfortunately, the MLS became the retiring ground for plethora of European football stars so he had to find something else. That something else was a career in high finance which got off to a shaky start at Lehman Brothers in the summer of 2008, just weeks before they went bankrupt. But it takes more than a global financial crisis to hold Mooney back. He moved on to Goldman Sachs in London, leaving in 2013 to achieve greater heights, quite literally, by becoming one of the few people alive to have scaled Mount Everest. After returning to sea level Mooney returned to finance with Citibank in New York City. In 2012 Mooney made his Chessboxing debut winning the inaugural “Bankers Belt” in a thrilling 11-round contest against Citibank trader and future colleague Bryan Woon from Singapore. Mooney is a fitness fanatic, a man proud of his “Fighting Irish” roots he never gives less than 100 per cent and full value for money.
Paul JD Roberts is a customer services adviser for a travel insurance company based in Plymouth. Roberts is also a freelance security manager in the city. He has a record of four bouts and three wins in white collar boxing as well as one win in MMA. This will be his first venture into Chessboxing which he discovered through friend and fellow competitor Chris Powell, a London Chessboxing regular. Paul describes himself as a typical Lad About Town and aims to create history by becoming Plymouth’s first ever Chessboxing champion.
Matt “Crazy Arms” Read Vs Liam “Yogi” Macpherson
Standing 6ft 7inches tall and with the spare frame of a long-distance runner, “Crazy Arms” is instantly recognisable to Chessboxing fans everywhere. One of the most experienced fighters on the circuit Read is a veteran of 10 encounters with seven wins and three defeats on his record. Formerly the manager of the UK’s leading chess retailer, Chess and Bridge, Read now earns his living in property development. He is a fearsome opponent with an unstoppable jab and unbelievably rapid at the chessboard. Question marks around Read’s fitness and staying power have dogged his Chessboxing career, but having trained for two half marathons already this year he aims to put these to bed once and for all this November.
“Yogi” Macpherson is a proud Scotsman and civil servant who can’t wait to escape his desk to make his chessboxing debut having taken up the sport in the spring. Being a first time chessboxer is no disadvantage according to Macpherson who is nothing if not confident. He says: “I’m planning to use the element of surprise to cause a major upset. I can’t wait to swap my kilt for a pair of boxing gloves.” We say, no need to swap, why not wear both?