Northumberland Boxers Seek Streetbeefz Glory

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Northumberland boxers Callum Nulty and Cameron Mullarkey are keenly awaiting the chance to show how well they box on the hybrid boxing Streetbeefz show in Consett on 6th July. Having only recently turned eighteen Mullarkey will be the youngest fighter there.

The sport of boxing has always been embedded in England’s north-east and this year a new hybrid boxing promotion Streetbeefz has quickly built itself a positive reputation amongst both fans and fighters who are keenly anticipating Streetbeefz Three which takes place in Consett on 6th July.

Streetbeefz is a hybrid form of boxing in which fighters wear slim four-ounce gloves as opposed to the heavier ten ounce in traditional professional bouts,’ explained Ben Hatchett. ‘This prepares boxers for eventual bare-knuckle fighting if that’s their aim and makes for very exciting hard-fought fights as the lighter gloves magnify the power of punches.’

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Hatchett, 34, set up Streetbeefz along with Paul Venis and Ryan Flavours. ‘I’m not proud of my past. I’ve had serious addiction issues and mental health problems. I spent time in a secure hospital. But boxing has purified me and especially bare knuckle where the only protection is mouth guards and hand wraps. Our boxers are physically tough but can be mentally quite fragile even vulnerable. The idea is that lads sort out ‘beef’ or disagreements by settling the issue in a fair fight in a controlled environment before emotions escalate thus avoiding anyone resorting to weapons. Some of the boxers on our previous shows at Eston Leisure Centre in Middlesbrough did have ‘beef’ but this won’t be the case at Consett. In nearly all cases a fight settles the disagreement and there’s subsequent respect and reconciliation.’

Callum NultyCallum Nulty
Callum Nulty

Cramlington’s Callum Nulty makes his third appearance for Streetbeefz on the Consett show. ‘I’ve been with them since the start,’ said Nulty, ‘but I was no novice. I’d had countless street fights. I won lots but lost some. I’ve been training hard for this next one learnt so much from the first two which I lost against more experienced men. I want to show boxing skills in the ring not just through poorly aimed punches. I won’t be easy on the opponent. I’ve a lot of respect for him. However, when the gloves are on, and we’re behind the ropes I’m going to hit him harder than he’s ever been hit with repeated powerful shots to his body and head. I’m going to break his body then his spirit and it’s bound to be painful, so I’ll make sure that the fight doesn’t go the planned three two-minute rounds distance. I just love the fighting and am so glad I’m doing it seriously, professionally and I want to thank my sponsor Jenna’s Dog Grooming Service.’

Restaurant worker Nulty is twenty-three and father to three young children including a newborn. His grandfather and uncle boxed in the forces. ‘I’ll build a name for myself by knocking out each opponent. I’m not proud of everything I’ve done but I’m not ashamed either at having been able to handle myself from an early age and to have gained respect on the streets for never turning down a fight. I believe that boxing should be taught in schools and all who want should be encouraged to prove their courage and strength in the ring having learnt self-discipline. There’s nothing better than getting in the ring and sorting out differences like men. You then leave the ring as friends. At least you won’t go to jail,’ joked Nulty.

Having turned eighteen on 29th March, Cameron Mullarkey from Blyth is easily the youngest fighter on the Consett show. ‘Streetbeefz is the best thing that’s happened to me in years. I’ve years ahead of me to gain experience and eventually achieve my ambition of being a world champion at middleweight fighting at the O2 in London. That’s what all boxers want.’

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It’s only recently that Mullarkey had his first boxing bout travelling to Bradford in May to fight on the Rock-Solid Promotions show after having trained for four years. ‘I lost unfortunately partly because of having to deal with a very last-minute change of opponent to a much trickier, vastly more experienced fighter than I’d expected. I was always big and tall for my age that I couldn’t get opponents, or they often pulled out. I’d trained with Ryan Flavours, and he suggested that I join Streetbeefz and I’m making my debut in Consett boxing alongside Callum Nulty who’s family. I’ve had issues with mental health and the boxing training routine helps me manage it without medicine. I want to show through boxing how people with anxiety can be successful and manage their mental health. It’s only possible thanks to my sponsors so massive thanks to AK Fitness and Physio, Debt Recovery Enterprises Ltd., Securicorp Security and 4Goodnessvapes.’

Callum Nulty in ActionCallum Nulty in Action
Callum Nulty in Action

Mullarkey lives in Seaton Sluice and grew up in foster care. The former student of Marden High in North Shields explained that ‘I was never academic but good at sport and loved P.E. I knew that my grandfather had boxed in the army against the navy. I became a father at seventeen. This was the best blessing ever and I’m determined to provide for my son and make him proud. I’m keen to raise money for mental health charities and I’ve also fundraised for Caiden’s Choice.’

Hatchett, Venis and Flavours are keen that Streetbeefz be a show for everyone and all aged sixteen and above are welcome. ‘We know that the bouts will be entertaining, hopefully exhilarating and enthralling but we’re enhancing the show by having a live performance by well-rapper Big Narstie well-known for his own TV show. We’ve also got Joe Egan a former sparring partner of Mike Tyson and who’s created some excitement by calling out Tyson Fury’s dad John. We’re proud that everything we do is legitimate and professionally organised. Any boxing can be dangerous, so our fighters have signed a waiver acknowledging this and there’ll be a doctor and medical team present as at any professional show. Our referees absolutely won’t let a fight continue if it’s putting a boxer’s health at risk. Co-owner Ryan Flavours does very careful matchmaking and vets the boxers’ suitability.’

‘I had my first bout five years ago,’ explained Flavours, 28. ‘I’ve developed many friendships through boxing and am proud to have helped create Streetbeefz which is enabling massive positive change for so many who renounce street fighting, flirting with knife culture and taking drugs. Many of the lads are involved in charity work on behalf of Caiden’s Chance fundraising for a young boy to go to Italy for potentially life-enhancing treatment for rheumatism. They’ve done the climb up Snowdon by the hardest route. That’s highly commendable but the best reward is hearing a fighter say, ‘I’m scared to think where I’d be without Streetbeefz.’

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