Here is everything you need to know about Eric Donovan's upcoming fight against Zelfa Barrett.
Where and when?
Friday, August 15, Matchroom Fight Card, Brentwood, Essex, England
What’s at stake?
The vacant International Boxing Federation (IBF) inter-continental super featherweight belt is up for grabs. More significantly, the winner will secure an IBF top 15 world ranking, which will leave him eligible for more lucrative fights including a possible world title shot. The current IBF world super featherweight title holder is 27-year old American Joseph 'Jo Joe' Diaz.
Who is Zelfa Barrett?
The 27-year old Mancunian is a highly-rated fighter with an impressive CV, winning all but one of his 24 fights. He made his professional debut in 2014 and has won the British and Commonwealth super featherweight titles. His only career loss came in 2017 when he was beaten by fellow Brit Ronnie Clarke in an IBF-sanctioned contest for the European super featherweight belt.
What channel is the fight on?
Sky Sports Action, 6pm. Donovan and Barrett are due in the ring at 9pm. However, if any of the three earlier fights on the show end prematurely, then the Donovan v Barrett fight will start before 9pm.
What Eric Donovan says:
"Honestly, I'm very grateful for the opportunity. I think in life if you want to be successful, no matter what, you have to take risks. You also have to be able to back it up. You have to be good enough and you have to prepare well.
"When this opportunity was presented to me, I knew that chances and opportunities for me are few and far between.
"Nobody has the balls to fight Zelfa at super featherweight in Britain. I believe in myself and I believe if I can get a good camp, good preparation, then I can put in a good performance and win this fight. So far we have done that. If I can perform to the best of my ability I think I can do enough to win."
What Zelfa Barrett says:
"I'm buzzing about this opportunity. Respect to Eric, I really appreciate him taking the fight. But I'm here to do a job on him. No disrespect to the guy. I'm going to look good doing it. The better he is, the better I'll be. I've dedicated my whole life towards boxing. I've moved in with my Uncle Pat (Barrett) for this camp, that was the hardest!
"I've not come this far to be put aside. I'm here to stay. I'm going to be fighting for world titles. No disrespect to him but he's in my way."
What the Bookies say:
Barrett is 1/7 to win the IBF belt. Athy-born, Louth-based Donovan is the 4/1 outsider while the draw in 20/1.
What’s next for Eric:
In the event of Donovan upsetting the odds and securing the biggest win of his professional career, he could be in line for a shot at a world title or at worst a title eliminator. Even though he is 35, a defeat doesn't mean the end of his career. He actually moved up a weight to take the fight and could comfortably return to the featherweight division.
By all accounts he has made a big impression on Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn. If he can acquit himself well in the ring on Friday night he is likely to feature on further Matchroom shows and possibly even secure a promotion deal.
Tale of the Tape
35 Age 27
5-6 Height 5-7
129lbs 10 ounces Weight 129lbs 10 ounces
Southpaw Stance Orthodox
12 Pro Fights 24
12 Wins 23
7 KOs 14
58% KOs% 61%
0 Losses 1
0 Draw 0
2016 Debut 2014
54 Rounds Fought 115
‘Lilywhite Lightning’ Alias ‘Brown Flash’