Highlights, frustrations and hopes: end of year survey part 3

Boxing Monthly
21/12/2017 4:12pm

Boxing Monthly canvassed over 100 figures from boxing for their reflections on 2017 and hopes for 2018. Today Charlie Edwards, Sunny Edwards, Marlen Esparza, Chris Eubank Jr (pictured left), Anthony Fowler, Charles Frankham, Kid Galahad, Mikey Garcia, Curtis Gargano, Ryan Garner, Stuart Hall znd Maxi Hughes have their say…

Interviews: John Angus MacDonald, Shaun Brown, Andrew Harrison, James Oddy, Danny Winterbottom & Luke G. Williams.

Charlie Edwards, British super flyweight champion (11-1)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Winning the British title.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Only fighting two times this year and [the] opponent we was supposed to [fight] to get a world ranking falling through last minute!
My hopes for 2018 are...
To get a domestic world title showdown with Kal Yafai.
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
If the promoters had team vs team cards on both broadcast channels.

Sunny Edwards, super flyweight (6-0)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Winning the WBO European super-flyweight title via knockout against 6-0 Ross Murray.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Fights with Louis Norman and Prince Patel falling through when I’d agreed my terms.
My hopes for 2018 are...
Winning the British title at either fly or super flyweight.
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
The level of ability a boxer must show before being able to turn professional. This would stop protected records and fight cards would be stacked with well-matched and exciting fights.

Marlen Esparza, flyweight (4-0)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Signing with the biggest promotional company in the United States, Golden Boy Promotions. I am the first female [boxer] to be signed by Golden Boy and have continued success on ESPN as well as free view pay-per-view .
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
I’ve had many difficulties throughout my boxing career, but I can honestly say that this year my frustration/disappointment came from realising that no matter how good my intentions are [some] people will still try to bring me down.
My hopes for 2018 are...
Work hard, win tittles, stay in my lane, and empower/influence those I can. As well as finish school!
The single thing that would most improve my boxing is...
Keeping my patience and believing in myself more than I already do by trusting that failures DO NOT make me a failure. Failures are one step forward, one step back, more like a cha cha!! :) In all honesty, I’m grateful you have decided to include me and get a female boxer's perspective. It’s never easy in life as a female and that is no different in regards to boxing. My entire life I had to learn to adjust and I constantly looked for approval. I grew very thick skin along the way and because of that, I continue to strive to be the best woman I can be while continuing to be the best boxer I can be.

Chris Eubank Jr, former British middleweight champion, IBO super middleweight champion (26-1)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Winning my first world title, becoming IBO super middleweight champ.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Not finding a way to knock out Arthur Abraham. Even though I won every round I could not stop him due to his world class defensive shell, which ended my six-fight KO streak.
My hopes for 2018 are...
I can already tell you the highlight of my boxing year next year. It will be winning my second world title when I knock out George Groves in the semi-final of the World Boxing Super Series
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
If the fighters were more intellectually aware of the business of boxing... so that being exploited for their money would become a thing of the past.

Anthony Fowler, super welterweight (4-0)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Finally boxing as a professional in Liverpool.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Having a quiet end to the year because of injuries.
My hopes for 2018 are...
To step up to title fights
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
[Me] being more fluent in the ring, going up and down the gears.

Charles Frankham, Commonwealth amateur youth games gold medallist, 60kg
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Commonwealth [Youth Games] gold medal
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Losing when I thought I [had] done more than enough to win a medal in [the] Europeans in Turkey.
My hopes for 2018 are...
Getting on [the] GB squad and [winning] senior ABAs.
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
[Improved] judges’ scoring.

Kid Galahad, featherweight, former British, European and Commonwealth super-bantamweight champion (23-0)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Getting out in the ring twice versus last minute, rearranged opponents and still grinding out wins on both occasions. To box in front of Andre Ward, a future Hall of Famer, and have him pay me such rich compliments and give me such good advice was a special highlight.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Not getting out a third time before the year closed out.
My hopes for 2018 are...
To be busy and in some big fights. I’ve worked my way into a strong position rankings-wise now and I’m looking to make a serious statement in 2018 and closing it out as a world champion!
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
Consistent and accurate judges’ scoring.

Mikey Garcia, WBC lightwwight champion (37-0)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Winning the WBC title to become a three-division world champion, and then moving up to 140lbs for a notable win.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was...
No frustrations for the year.
My hopes for 2018 are...
To fight the best champions in boxing and to continue to give the fans what they are asking for.
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
For all the promoters to work together and not get greedy so that the best fights can be made and fans can get to see what they want.
Mikey Garcia fights for the IBF super lightweight title against Sergey Lipinets on 20 February.

Curtis Gargano, light heavyweight (0-46-1)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Boxing Steven Ward on Boxnation and going the distance. He was a giant and an amateur champion. It made me proud to go the distance live in front of Barry Jones and Steve Bunce.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
My 20th fight of the year [TKO2 against Sebastian Slusarczyk] which was my last. I had a really bad injury and my body needed a rest, but I’ll be back stronger and lighter in 2018.
My hopes for 2018 are...
To come back two weight divisions lighter at middleweight and pick up some good wins against some prospects.
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
Making home fighters have to fight away [from home]. There would be better fights, but then that wouldn't be good for me and the other journeymen! Ha ha!

Ryan Garner, super featherweight (6-0)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Being able to share the ring and spar with Carl Frampton for two-three weeks in build up to my last fight, and to then win that fight with a first-round stoppage.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Being out of the ring for four/five months through a personal reason which was very frustrating because at the end of the day I’m a full time pro so it’s my living, but I’m glad to be back on track and fighting next weekend.
My hopes for 2018 are...
To just keep progressing and winning my fights and look good doing so and, who knows, maybe towards the end of the year start going for some domestic titles.
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
More of these Super Series boxing tournaments in all weights, where all world champions enter and then the finally the boxing world and fans will know who the best in that weight is. There’s too many champions avoiding other good fighters in their weight.

Stuart Hall, former IBF bantamweight champion (21-6-2)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
Seeing my gym mate Kal Yafai defend his world title.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Losing to Paul Butler - probably went in with wrong game plan and he boxed a very clever fight.
My hopes for 2018 are...
If I carry on with boxing, which I haven’t decided yet, maybe step up to super bantamweight.
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
Less f****** corruption and silly judging - it’s killing the sport … A lot of people thought I beat [Lee] Haskins [in September 2016] and there’s been so many bad decisions.

Maxi Hughes, super featherweight (18-3-2)
The highlight of my boxing year was ...
My last fight stopping Cassius Connor who came in 4lb over weight at the weigh-in and had been giving me abuse on social media for ten weeks before the fight.
The biggest frustration or disappointment of my boxing year was ...
Losing my British title shot.
My hopes for 2018 are...
To fight for and win the British title.
The single thing that would most improve boxing is...
To make the most competitive fights in each weight division happen and / or for boxers to get paid more.

Ring records correct at time of original interviews, but may have since changed.