Northumberland boxer Cyrus Pattinson facing biggest fight yet on Benn vs Van Heerden undercard

North East boxer Cyrus Pattinson is facing his biggest fight to date after only turning professional last year.

The welterweight, from Alnwick in Northumberland, will fight Russian boxer Alexey Tukhtarov on Saturday night in Manchester.

Cyrus says, "I'm excited, the hard work has been done, it is a good platform, a good stage.

"I'm looking forward to getting out there and showing people what I can do.

"He's a Russian fighter, he's very durable, he's boxed for Russian titles, he's going to want to put me through my paces but we've got a game plan and we're going to stick to our tactics and hopefully get a win."

The fight takes place on the undercard of the Conor Benn vs Chris van Heerden fight.

As part of his training in the run-up to the fight, Cyrus has been working with former Team GB boxer Calum French at Birtley Boxing Club.

French, who is a lightweight, is also working his way into the professional boxing world and the pair have been able to feed off each other in training.

Cyrus has been training alongside Calum French who has also turned pro after a long spell boxing for Team GB. Credit: ITV News Tyne Tees

Calum said: "We're both learning on the job, we're both new to this pro game so everything is new to us, we're learning all the time and picking new stuff up and learning the tricks of the trade.

"I'm enjoying it, it's a new lease of life and I'm just trying to get stuck in and progress through the pros."

Birtley Boxing Club has a reputation in the North East for developing a number of successful boxers, including Pat and Luke McCormack.

Graeme Rutherford, who has been coaching Cyrus, said: "It's been a steep learning curve for us all I think.

"The pros are a slower pace, you can afford to lose rounds but we know what Cyrus needs to do now and we know we want to get there, and we've put it all into practice in the gym and hopefully it will work on Saturday night."

Cyrus hopes his rise in the professional arena will lead to his first pro title fight later in the year.

Cyrus added: "It's just getting the ring time in. A lot of my opponents have been quite durable, so it's just getting the rounds under my belt, so you have that experience of a longer duration, it is not three rounds anymore.

"I think my promoter Matchroom wants to push me for a title at the Newcastle arena. We hope I can do that by the end of the year."