A GROUP of up-and-coming Welsh boxers will have the chance to experience a big show atmosphere when the British Lionhearts take on the France Fighting Roosters at the Newport Centre.

As part of the World Series of Boxing (WSB) event on Saturday, April 14, the Lionhearts have agreed to stage an undercard of amateur bouts featuring Wales versus England match-ups.

The contests will take place under amateur boxing rules (three rounds of three minutes), before the five-bout WSB clash between the Lionhearts and Roosters.

Three of the undercard bouts have been confirmed and the Welsh team will be represented by clubs in Rhonnda, Llandudno and Shotton.

Billy Unsworth (Shotton ABC) faces Harvey Smith (Chadwell St Mary ABC) at light-flyweight (49kg), Rhys Edwards (Rhondda ABC) tackles Ethan James (Kings Heath ABC) at lightweight (60kg) ad Connor Burns (Llandudno ABC) meets Owen Cooper (Worcester City ABC) at welterweight (69kg).

It is hoped that a middleweight bout featuring Jordan Withers of Gelligaer ABC will be added to the line-up.

The undercard bouts will start at 6.30pm and WSB gets under way 90 minutes later.

Tickets are on sale now, priced £20, at gbboxing.org.uk/tickets.

“At every Lionhearts match we do something to support the local boxing community and we felt this was a good opportunity to give some up-and-coming boxers a chance to box in a large arena and get a sense of what it is like to be part of a big boxing show,” said GB Boxing performance director Rob McCracken.

“The fact it is Wales versus England will create extra interest and I am sure it will really enhance the evening’s boxing.”

Welsh Boxing pathway officer Adam Park added: “Welsh Amateur Boxing is really excited to support the undercard on this World Series of Boxing event being held in Wales.

“When we were approached by GB Boxing we saw it as an ideal opportunity to showcase some of our up-and-coming youth boxers who are knocking on the door of our new Elite Programme.

“Not only will it be really competitive against the English team, it will give the boxers a great opportunity to fight in a world-class facility with such a major production supporting the event.”

England Boxing’s lead performance coach Mick Driscoll said: “This is a great opportunity for strong young talent from the home nations to gain priceless experience boxing at a World Series of Boxing show.

“The bouts will be excellent to watch and I think it’ll be great for Wales to have their home crowd behind them.”

WSB is a team competition which bridges the gap between Olympic and professional boxing and is contested by the world’s leading amateur boxers who compete without vests or headguards over five three-minute rounds.

WSB matches are made-up of five bouts and the team which triumphs in three or more are the winners.

More details on the British Lionhearts are available at gbboxing.org.uk/world-series-boxing/ and by following the team on twitter at @Brit_Lionhearts.