The raw sport of bare-knuckle boxing returns to west Cumbria this weekend with a major show in Workington.

WBKB II is the second big bare-knuckle event staged in the west of the county after a successful debut show in Whitehaven last August.

Organisers say this Saturday’s event will see an even bigger and better show which includes title fights and some top local talent as well as boxers from further afield.

It is staged at CRL, Lillyhall, and is set to be a sell-out as Cumbrian fight fans watch the action.

Peter Gilmour, who is part of the WBKB organising team, said: “The first show was fantastic – it probably wildly exceeded our expectations. We feel everything has gone up a level for this second one.

“We had the fight card much in place since last September. This is culmination of six months’ work. We’ve been able to sell more of the fighters’ stories through spotlight interviews where they tell us a bit about their backgrounds.

“The production value has also increased massively. A company called Winward Media are coming on the day – they do all the filming and videography for BKFC.

“Things like this will elevate this show upwards and it will raise the bar for the standards we set.

“I also think this time the level of the fights will be even better than the first show.

“A lot of shows out there take great satisfaction in quick knock-outs. We feel if we have too many of those we haven’t done our job as matchmakers.

“With the fights on Saturday, I genuinely think you can make a case for each contest going either way.

“There are too many combat sport fights where you pretty much know the outcome before it’s started. That’s not something we’d be chuffed about delivering for the fight fans of Cumbria.”

Top of the bill on Saturday night will be the WBKB British featherweight title contest between reigning lightweight champion Bartek ‘the Polish Plough’ Kanabey and Nathan ‘Chicken’ Thompson.

“Bartek is bidding to become a double champion after dropping down a weight, and his opponent, Nathan, is a highly experienced former MMA fighter, who has fought UFC superstars,” said Gilmour.

A WBKB British Welterweight title showdown will also see Jack ‘One Smack’ Dugdale face Will Cairns.

Whitehaven News: Will Cairns, right, will be involved in a title fight on SaturdayWill Cairns, right, will be involved in a title fight on Saturday (Image: Lee Macaulay)

Whitehaven favourite Connor Hetherington will take on Doncaster’s Ashley Sanderson, while Workington’s Dan Park will also have strong backing in the crowd as he fights Shaun Kissane in a British title eliminator.

“Connor and Dan have both sold lots of tickets, and the easy thing to do would be to give them walkover fights, make them look like heroes, added Gilmour.

“But no – we’re expecting them to be in 50-50 fights.

“Another good fight will be Grant Hocking, a Whitehaven lad who’s had a really good MMA career, against Jonny Goodall from Edinburgh.” The latter is a British cruiserweight title eliminator.

The event will also be attended by Carlisle’s British light-heavyweight BKFC champion Danny Christie among the referees, along with Dave Straughton and Carl Ward.

Special guest on the night, meanwhile, will be Joe Egan, the Irish former sparring partner of Mike Tyson.

Gilmour added: “We’re joining forces with a few other promoters under UNITY management – forming a network of fight companies that all do things correctly.

“It means we know when we send a fight to one of the other companies, and vice-versa, we’re not going to be fighting in haybales and getting first aid by a bucket and sponge, but we will be getting the right first aid and cover and treatment, and also try to cut out any rogue elements.

“Anyone who comes on the night will see a great and legitimate sporting event.”

Remaining tickets are very limited and anyone interested is encouraged to contact WBKBII in advance via 07568729822 or on Facebook HERE, with tickets unlikely to be available on the door.