Sport Matters: It’s now or never for Doncaster to discover the spirit

Jamie McDonnell (centre) pictured at his recent press conference. Picture: Andrew Roe
Jamie McDonnell (centre) pictured at his recent press conference. Picture: Andrew Roe

Doncaster’s slogan of ‘Discover the spirit’ has never been more apt in sporting circles.

Because if Jamie McDonnell’s IBF world title fight at the Keepmoat Stadium does not discover the town’s sporting spirit, nothing ever will.

McDonnell’s historic night in May - the first time ever that a Doncaster lad has fought for a globally recognised world title - has quite rightly been billed as the town’s biggest ever one-off sporting event.

It promises to be an absolutely barnstorming night at the Keepmoat - but only if Doncaster folk get off their armchairs and support Hatfield’s finest.

Promoter Dennis Hobson has taken a huge gamble by booking the showdown with Mexico’s Julio Ceja for a new, outdoor boxing venue.

But it is the backdrop that Jamie always wanted.

He wants to make history. He wants to do it in his own backyard. And any serious sports fan in Doncaster would be just plain daft to miss out on this one.

Sport in Doncaster is plagued by apathy. For various reasons, empty seats have sadly became the norm here.

But nothing would reflect worse on the town than failing to sell out the 9,000 tickets that have been made available for McDonnell’s moment in the limelight.

McDonnell’s rise up the boxing ranks, from a part-time plasterer to potential world champion, is a story that should inspire even the town’s non-sporting fraternity.

Now he has the chance to really put Doncaster on the map - and you can help him.

It’s time for the people of Doncaster to stand up and be counted.