Martin Gethin lands a British title shot

Walsall's Martin Gethin was today ranked the No 1 contender to the British lightweight title.

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Walsall's Martin Gethin was today ranked the No 1 contender to the British lightweight title after champion Gavin Rees was ordered to defend his crown.

The British Boxing Board of control have selected Gethin, the IBO International and former two-time English title holder, as the next challenger.

They have put the fight out to purse bids to be received by Wednesday November 17 and ordered the contest to take place by the end of January.

Gethin has made Rees his next target after landing a world-ranking in the IBO's top 50, by virtue of his title win over Leeds' Carl Johanneson last month.

The two rumbled for the belt on a Frank Warren show at the Hilton Hotel in Mayfair, London, with Gethin winning by stoppage in the 11th round.

The 28-year-old is now more in the British title frame than at any point of his eight-year pro career and name-checked Rees only last week.

He told the Express & Star: "Rees is a bit quicker than Johanesson but he is a similar sort of fighter, he just moves his head more.

"I would have a chance against him, it all depends on whether he can keep up with the pressure I would put on him.

"There's no point in avoiding anyone, I have showed what I can do and people should see that."

Gethin was previously put up for one of two British title eliminators in 2010 but then spent an additional year out of the ring with a back injury.

Gary McArthur was picked as his opponent then while the board also decreed that John Watson would face Ryan Brawley but neither fight came off.