Avtandil Khurtsidze is headed for a world title shot.

Avtandil Khurtsidze has a shot at Billy Joe Saunders on deck, as the Georgian middleweight dominated Tommy Langford today in Leicester, England, stopping the previously unbeaten home fighter in the fifth round.

Khurtsidze (33-2-2, 22 KO) was his usual self, giving up a lot of height and reach but coming at Langford (18-1, 6 KO) like a tornado, constantly trying to land big power shots, and succeeding enough to keep Langford off-balance. It didn’t help Langford that his own power wasn’t nearly enough to dent the durable Khurtsidze, who shook off everything and just kept charging forward.

Khurtsidze, who turns 38 in early May, is tentatively set to face Saunders (24-0, 12 KO) on July 8 in London. Can the all-action veteran pull an upset and become a world champion late in his career?



By Frank Warren –

My recent purse bid win could prove pivotal to the career of our unbeaten middleweight Tommy Langford.

The 27-year-old holds the mandatory spot for the British title held by Chris Eubank jnr and after winning the right to stage the fight, Eubank will have to put up or shut up.

As most people who have any previous when it comes to dealing with them will testify, attempting to second guess Team Eubank is anything but an exact science. What we do know, however, is that the British title does appear to hold a value to them.

Offers have been presented in the last year or so for a rematch with Billy Joe Saunders, a challenge for the WBA regular title held by Danny Jacobs and, most recently, a shot at the three world title belts held by Gennady Golovkin.

The fact that two of those career-furthering opportunities were knocked back for a tilt at and then a defence of a domestic championship does suggest they won’t give it up without a fight and Eubank jnr remains two defences away from ownership of the belt.

That’s the theory anyway, although there is always very little method in the madness, so watch this space.

What we do know for sure is that our man Langford is more than up for the job in hand.

It is a logical next step for Tommy, who already holds the Commonwealth and WBO Intercontinental titles, and claiming the scalp of Eubank would afford him the greater exposure and credibility his talents deserve.

One thing is for sure, he will not be coming in just to make up the numbers.

By his own honest admission, Tommy is not a devastatingly powerful puncher, but he picks his punches well and it is an accumulation of well-timed shots that overwhelms his opponents.

He is supremely conditioned and able to maintain the same workrate from the first bell to the last. It was actually not until his 16th fight – against Lewis Taylor for the Commonwealth – that he was judged to have first dropped a couple of rounds.

He is at the point in his career where he is ready to step it up. Tommy is ranked at No.2 by the WBO and could jump straight into world title contention if he wished but, like Billy Joe before him, he wants to prove his worth at every level before competing for global honours.

You rightly wouldn’t get the credit you deserve as a world champion if challenges on the home front were given a swerve.

A Langford victory would certainly leave the Eubanks pondering the wisdom of a few swerves of their own that they may live to regret. A look at the bank balance could well bring about a few sighs of ‘what might have been’ had it not been for a few lost paydays.

When it comes to signing up for this one, it won’t be Tommy mislaying his biro.




Via Email Only July 21, 2016

Lou Dibella
Dibella Entertainment

Frank Warren
Frank Warren Promotions

Re: WBO Middleweight Elimination Bout Negotiations Left Without Effect Avtandil Khurtsidze vs. Tommy Langford


Previously, on June 7th, negotiations were ordered for the WBO Middleweight Elimination Bout between Avtandil Khurtsidze and Tommy Langford. However, at this time, the order has been left without effect.

Please be advised that the future of the division will be discussed in depth during the WBO 29th Convention to be held in San Juan, Puerto Rico from the 17th to the 21st of October.

Yours truly,

Batista Salas signature

Luis Batista Salas, Esq.
C/c Francisco Valcarcel, Esq.


Recently coronated Commonwealth middleweight king Tommy Langford has developed a flavour for championship belts and identifies Chris Eubank Jr’s Lonsdale Belt as next on his wishlist, writes Glynn Evans.

Turbo Tommy, who also holds the WBO Inter-Continental strap, earned his Commonwealth honour with a high grade, high octane 12 round decision over fellow Midlander Lewis Taylor at Liverpool’s Echo Arena in March. Now unbeaten in 16, he is starting to get greedy.

‘I understand Eubank’s mandatory will be issued in September and I hope it’s me,’ says the 26 year old former England amateur captain who was born in Barnstable, Devon but is now based in Birmingham.

‘The Eubanks seldom abide by the rules but, if it’s me, I’ve no issue with taking it. I need a scalp of his magnitude to project my profile and, because of his dad, Eubank is the biggest name on the scene.

‘We’ve sparred in the recent past and, though you can’t take too much into that, I know what he does well and what he doesn’t do well and believe my style exploits his. Sure, Chris Jr is dangerous but Billy Joe (Saunders) exposed his limitations with his quality and movement. I’d be confident.’

The spat with Taylor provided quality fare for the fans but sports science graduate Langford is shrewd enough to know he’ll need to smarten up his act considerably if he’s to thwart the precocious Eubank.

‘It was great to be involved in such an entertaining fight but I’m always very critical of myself, always craving the perfect performance and when I watched the tape back I weren’t happy,’ acknowledges Langford who re-surfaces this weekend with a fourth defence of his Inter-Continental bauble at Cardiff Ice Arena.

‘My approach was all wrong. Lewis made a very good start, I was a bit slow out the blocks and, thereafter, I lost track of my plan. I’m known for my energy so every time Taylor hit me with one, I tried to hit him back with three and made a lot of mistakes. I was far better in the gym during camp.

‘I know how good I can be defensively but I was leaky, got caught far too much. It was mental sloppiness as much as anything.  I’ve taken on board the criticisms and really worked on making corrections. I intend righting a few wrongs in Cardiff.

‘That said, it shows how hard I am to beat, if I won 10 rounds out of 12 on all judges cards against a decent opponent on what supposedly was an ‘off night’. It was very pleasing to collect the Commonwealth title. While my WBO InterContinental belt gets me a high world ranking, the public seem to view the Commonwealth belt as more prestigious. It’s a very big deal in north Devon!’

The smooth boxing six footer’s recent championship exploits have catapulted him to a number two world ranking at the WBO. A challenge to champion Billy Joe Saunders – who also operates under the Frank Warren umbrella – would be easy to organise and would provide a paradise match-up for the sport’s purists.

‘If the Saunders fight was offered, I’d definitely take it because, though Billy Joe is top quality, I believe he’s beatable. And if the other alternative is ‘Triple G’…!’  chuckles Tommy.

‘My style and work rate are a nightmare for southpaws and I’ve also got the experience of hundreds of rounds sparring with (former world amateur champion) Frankie Gavin, one of the slickest southpaws in the business.

‘Realistically, I’m not looking to force the Billy Joe fight immediately because I’m not sure the public would buy into it right now. It’d be far more ideal to have it in a year’s time – especially if we’re both undefeated.’

To that end, he’ll need to sparkle this Saturday against Timo Laine who arrives unbeaten in his last 5 and will no doubt be keen to cause an upset in front of a packed Ice Arena Wales.

‘I needed a good break after the Taylor fight because I’d become a bit flat but now I feel refreshed,’ insists Langford who is coached by Tom Chaney in Hall Green.

‘It’s a fantastic bill to be part of. Cardiff is a great location for me, a half way point for both my Brummie and north Devon fans so hopefully I’ll bring a good crowd. I’ve got great travelling support.



By Terence Dooley

Echo Arena, Liverpool – Tommy Langford (159¼lbs) and Lewis Taylor (159lbs) engaged in a bitty war of attrition for the vacant middleweight Commonwealth title most recently held by Billy Joe Saunders and Langford’s WBO Inter-Continental belt.

Neither man gained dominion over the other early on, so it became a tit for tat affair with Langford looking to land combinations and Taylor enjoying some single shot success as the stanzas sped by.

Langford’s career really picked up momentum in 2015; the Birmingham-based boxer beat Julio Cesar Avalos (W TKO 4), Cristian Fabian Rios (W 10) and Robert Swierzbinski (W TKO 5), winning and twice retaining the WBO Inter-Continental belt during that hat-trick of wins.

Tayor, though, was on a two-win streak since losing to Eamonn O’Kane in May of last year—a majority decision reverse over 12 for the IBF Inter-Continental title—so he came in buoyed by victories over Grant Cunningham and Jez Wilson (W TD 5 and TKO 5 respectively).

Despite picking up a cut over the left eye in the ninth, Langford marched forward through the slowly trickling blood to blast home a series of body shots.

Cutsman Kerry Kayes stemmed the flow between rounds, but Taylor was unable to consistently repeal the bludgeoning attacks of his determined co-challenger.  Still, he threaded home enough single shots to keep Langford honest as the fight entered the crucial championship rounds.

The bell went for the 11th round heralded Langford into new entirely territory—the win over Rios was the sole occasion that he has entered the 10th round of a fight.  Taylor has done 12 once; he pushed on early in the penultimate round only for Langford to gain a foothold going in the final minute.

Marcus McDonnell applauded both boxers as they went into the last round.  Neither man had enough pep to produce a late rally or knockdown, they held more often than in the earlier rounds as the seconds slipped away.

Scores of 118-110 (Terry O’Connor), 118-111 (Steve Gray) and 118-111 (Dave Parris) added the Commonwealth belt to Langford’s trophy cabinet.  Langford progresses to 16-0 (5); Taylor drops to 18-2-1 (3).

“I won it convincingly,” Langford said.  “I could have boxed better behind my jab, used my feet better or got out of the way, instead I was pulling out and getting caught.  Credit to Taylor, better than I expected and he can come again.”

“It was a good fight, he should learn a lot from it,” added Warren.  “He’ll watch it, see his mistakes and there’s a couple of things to work on.  Big Heart, great for the fans and he’ll learn from that and hopefully by the end of the year be fighting for a world title.”

The Inter-Continental belt has lifted Langford up the WBO’s ratings, he sits at four and Warren also promotes Billy Joe Saunders so it could be a viable option for all involved if Langford adds another few wins to his W column.

Earlier in the night, Warren revealed that he believes a showdown with consensus number one, but not the linear holder, Gennady Golovkin is a stadium fight so should be placed on the back burner until 2017.  However, he also revealed that Saunders himself is chomping at the bit for the chance to meet “GGG”.

In the meantime, though, Saunders faces WBO #11 Max Bursak at London’s Copper Box Arena on April 30 in the maiden defence of the belt he won by out-pointing Andy Lee in December.