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Black Country boxer Tyler Denny set for biggest career bout in Wolverhampton Civic Hall show

Tyler Denny is living a dream from which he has no desire to wake.

Tyler Denny celebrates victory against Macauley McGowan in the Vacant EEU Middleweight Championship bout at the Resorts World Arena, Birmingham. Picture date: Saturday May 6, 2023. PA Photo. See PA Story BOXING Birmingham. Photo credit should read: Bradley Collyer/PA Wire...RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only, no commercial use without prior consent from rights holder..

This Saturday he faces Italy’s Matteo Signani for the European middleweight title at Wolverhampton’s Civic Hall, comfortably the biggest fight of his career in the biggest boxing show round these parts for nearly a decade.

“It’s pinch yourself stuff, 100 per cent,” he smiles. “It is certainly beyond anything I could have believed when I first got into the sport.

“I never really had any aims and from where I started, I’ve probably already over-achieved. But I’m enjoying this ride and confident I can carry it on.”

Unthinkable as it once might have seemed, Saturday’s showdown with Signani is no fantasy. Denny has more than earned his shot after compiling one of the most impressive winning runs of any British boxer in recent years.

Four of his last five victories have been against previously unbeaten fighters, catapulting a career he admits was stuck in “no-man’s land” when the Rowley Regis ace last fought in the Black Country in 2019 toward the big time.

The transformation has come about, in part, through his switch to Black Country Boxing, the Wednesbury gym run by trainer Errol Johnson which has built a strong stable of talented fighters.

Yet most important of all has been the chance to focus on his craft full-time. Denny, who would previously fit boxing around his day job as a plumber, has since 2021 been sponsored by Steve Sankey from Brierley Hill firm S&R Construction, an initial short-term deal having been extended after a win over Derrick Osaze in the car park outside Sheffield Arena sparked his rapid rise.

“They offered to pay me a month’s wages to take off work and train before the Osaze fight,” he explains. “When I won that, he said: ‘Why don’t you take a year off?’

“It was a risk, of course, but two years later here we are. He said if it doesn’t work out I can have a job with him.

“I saw him the other day and he told me if I don’t beat Signani, he’ll have my uniform ready for me on the Monday morning. I never know whether he is joking, but it certainly gives me an added incentive!

“I’m enjoying my life at the moment. I don’t want to go back to full-time work but I know to do that, I have to keep winning.”