Bailey Sugden on the road to US glory
12:00pm Thu Mar 16, 2017
Bailey Sugden will fight in the US after his final against Mo Abdurahman. Photograph: Rick Wilks, Primal Pixels Photography
Kickboxer Bailey Sugden is dreaming of fighting in the US after a great showing in the UK’s first Road To Glory event.
The 19-year-old Suggy’s Gym fighter, part of an eight-man featherweight tournament, finished second to earn a place in the world’s leading kickboxing promotion
After battling to victories in his first two fights against Andrew Liddell and Adrian Maxim, Sugden, of Newark, was defeated in the final by Southampton’s Mo Abdurahman.
However, his performance in front of a capacity crowd at Meres Leisure Centre, Grantham, was enough to earn a place at Glory — and he could make his Stateside debut in New York.
“I am delighted to be fighting for Glory now. This will allow me to focus solely on fighting and testing my skills at the highest level,” he said.
“There is talk of me making my Glory debut in New York at the iconic Madison Square Garden — how great would that be?
“Chad (his brother) was lucky enough to fight in Las Vegas, but New York would match that.
“As for the tournament, I was disappointed not to win the whole thing but Mo is a great fighter.
“I would love to fight him when I am fresh and not after six hard rounds.”
The Glory event at Gran-tham was run by Suggy’s Gym, of Newark.
Also appearing for the gym was Jay Chadburn, who went head-to-head with Spirit Dojo’s Jack Layton, from Newark, with the latter winning a split decision.
'Icing on the cake was Bailey’s performance'
There was a total of 24 professionals on the show. One of the biggest fights of the night saw multiple world champion Kev Ward, of Elite, Southport, take on world champion Jamie Bates, of Masaac Masters, Durham.
Suggy’s Gym head coach Dean Sugden, Bailey’s father, said: “We have been promoting shows for 17 years but this was without doubt the best we have put on.
“Not only did it make history by being the first of its kind in the UK, with a full house in attendance and more than 100,000 people across the world watching live, but it has attracted incredible interest from TV and other media.
“It is a great achievement for everyone at the gym.
“The icing on the cake was Bailey’s performance and now he follows in the footsteps of his brother, Chad, with a Glory contract.
“As a dad, to have three sons (Regis Sugden is also a fighter) achieve what they have is incredible.”
The head of talent and managing director of Glory Sports International, Cor Hemmers, who presented contracts for two-fight Glory deals to Bailey Sugden and Abdurahman, praised the promotion and the quality of the fights.
“We could scout some great potential talent for a Glory future here,” he said.