Frank Warren and Eddie Hearn insist UK market remains vital

The growing influx of Saudi Arabia within boxing has been telling, with the riches on offer and calming the waters between rival factions of fighters and promoters alike.

Eddie Hearn and Frank Warren, the UK’s most-established promoters, have begun a blossoming working relationship alongside Turki Alalshikh, whose influence within the sport has been rapid and telling with him wanting the best fighters to meet one another in his home nation of Saudi Arabia. 

Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk will finally contest the undisputed heavyweight championship – following injury to WBC titleholder Fury – on May 18. Before the undisputed heavyweight clash, Anthony Joshua takes to the ring against Francis Ngannou on March 8, which will see the winner of Joshua-Nagnnou likely face the winner of Fury-Usyk in 2025. 

However, Warren and Hearn recently sat down together with DAZN, as both promoters attempted to reassure concerns that the promotional powerhouses will maintain a focus on their primary market. 

“We’ve got to keep doing what we do,” Warren said. “We’ve got our respective TV companies that we’ve got to deliver shows for. And that will happen, continue to happen.”

Hearn followed Warren’s lead by adding that despite the opportunities in Saudi Arabia, there is now more pressure on him to deliver for his primary market. 

Hearn said he was hoping to secure “three or four big arena-/stadium fights” for the fighters he represents 

“I think [there’s] more pressure to do that than ever, actually, to prove to people that, you know, this is our home,” Hearn said.

“This [the UK] is our primary market for both of us, so I want to try and see three or four big arena fights or stadium fights solidified. But, of course, this [Saudi] is a big opportunity for boxing and our fighters. We can’t disregard that, either.”