Peter Catt: McDonnell v Wale could be an all-time Dome classic

Stefy Bull (right) on his way to retaining his Central Area Lightweight Championship title against Gwyn Wale.
Stefy Bull (right) on his way to retaining his Central Area Lightweight Championship title against Gwyn Wale.

Fight fans are in for a treat at the Dome on Saturday night.

Since becoming a promoter, former Conisbrough lightweight Stefy Bull has quickly earned a reputation for putting on some of the best small hall shows around.

Not for Stefy are the usual mismatches of down and out journeymen supplying cannon fodder for the area’s up and coming prospects.

He prefers giving the crowd their money’s worth with a fair sprinkling of evenly matched and real pick ‘em contests.

In the past he has put on fights between unbeaten boxers, normally unheard of on local shows, and given his own stable of fighters some tough opponents to test them.

But even he has surpassed himself with the top of the bill contest on Saturday – a clash between local favourites Dunscroft’s Gavin McDonnell and Brampton hero Josh Wale.

It’s a throwback to the fight that produced one of the best boxing night atmospheres ever at the Dome when Bull himself climbed into the ring with Wale’s elder brother Gwyn eight years ago. With local pride at stake, and rival sets of supporters roaring them on, Bull produced a master class of boxing that night to clinch the contest by three rounds against an aggressive opponent as game as they come.

Bull will be hoping for a similar outcome for his man McDonnell this time round but the Brampton man will be just as keen to restore the glory to Wale household.

Only world champion Jamie McDonnell has managed to reproduce the atmosphere of that spine tingling night eight years ago but twin brother Gavin will be aiming to emerge from his shadow and claim a little glory of his own.

It’s a fight that’s almost too close to call.

At 25 Wale is the younger man by two years but has had far more experience and fought tougher opponents than McDonnell. He exploded on the scene in his first fight when he knocked out his opponent in 75 seconds at the Dome in October, 2006.

Wale won the Central Area title in only his fifth fight, distinguished himself in the Prizefighter tournament three years ago when he beat former European king Esham Pickering before losing on a split decision to the eventual winner, and has already fought for the Commonwealth title.

His five losses have come against top notch opponents and he has stopped more than half of the 15 fighters he has beaten.

But McDonnell has yet to taste defeat as an amateur or professional and has come on leaps and bounds in the last twelve months ending three of his last four fights early against opponents with good records.

However, it was the one that went the distance that was the more impressive when he completely dominated Paul Economides to win a lopsided points verdict.

McDonnell has started to ooze class and Wale is the ideal opponent to test just how far he has come.

It’s a fight no self respecting boxing fan can afford to miss.