IBF European title defence awaits Joe Mullender next
‘Smokin’ Joe Mullender (11-2) will defend his IBF European middleweight title for the first time at the Brentwood Centre on October 20.
The ex-English titlist won the vacant IBF strap with an 11-round TKO of Welsh Area champion Lee Churcher (13-4-1) last December at the Copper Box Arena on the undercard of James DeGale’s shock defeat to Caleb Truax.
The middleweight from Brentwood, trained by Jamie Williams at the Legends Gym, has been out of action all year as he has been under investigation for testing positive to a banned substance.
The 31-year-old tested positive for a banned substance – dimethylbutylamine – and was issued a four-month ban for an anti-doping offense, which was backdated to January 12 2018. However, the findings ruled that the amount present was unlikely to have any effect on the athlete and, as the ingredient had not been listed on the label of the product, UKAD made it clear that they were not accusing Mullender of cheating or acting intentionally.
UKAD have three categories of bans and the lightest of those groups were imposed as a result of the hearing, which is classed in their reports as a “light degree of fault”.
Now that the hearing is behind him, the 160-pounder is looking ahead to the 42nd weekend of the year to defend the IBF strap he plans to earn a world ranking with. Fellow Brits Martin Murray, Jason Welborn, Liam Cameron and Ireland’s Gary O’Sullivan all occupy spots in the top 15, of which Mullender wishes to break into.
Mullender was crowned the new English middleweight champion back in June after beating former champion and club mate Lee Markham to avenge his previous loss at the 02 Arena in 2016.
He decided to vacate his English title in September in order to secure a shot at the IBF title but is still determined to bag a British title showdown with either the winner of champion Jason Welborn or challenger Mark Heffron early next year.
To follow Joe on Twitter, click here @joe_mullender
For tickets to the next fight, please call 07904 719 639
Joe would like to thank his sponsors LMAC Construction, J.Ebsworth Brickwork Services, Grilla Fitness, AB Salute Gym and Agent Tim Rickson