• Welterweight

Brook replaced by Purdy for Alexander title fight

ESPN staff
April 20, 2013
Lee Purdy is a Matchroom stablemate of Kell Brook © PA Photos

Kell Brook's loss has been Lee Purdy's gain after it was confirmed he will step up for an IBF welterweight title clash with Devon Alexander.

Brook has long been scheduled to fight for Alexander's world title, but his withdrawal from the bout earlier this week was the third such occasion that the fight has been delayed.

The Sheffield fighter revealed he had a foot injury, later saying he was "gutted" to miss his childhood dream of competing for a world title. Alexander's patience has worn thin, and he will still fight on May 18.

Instead, Brook's Matchroom stablemate Purdy will step up for the Atlantic City contest, confirmed by promoter Eddie Hearn on Saturday.

"It's a funny old game how things play out," Hearn tweeted. "Lee Purdy will challenge Devon Alexander for the IBF world title on May 18 in Atlantic City.

"Kell Brook will remain No. 1 mandatory challenger with the IBF. Who fancies Purdy v Brook in September for the IBF strap?!"

Golden Boy promoter Richard Schaefer added: "Devon will be fighting his mandatory against Lee Purdy. He was the next available contender based on the IBF [rankings]. He is promoted by Eddie Hearn. We agreed on the deal. The fight is on."

Kevin Cunningham, Alexander's manager and trainer, commented on the revised bout: "We were ready to fight Brook but now we'll fight Purdy. We just want to take care of our mandatory obligation and move on to bigger and better things.

"Devon has been ready to fight. We don't care who it is. We just want to fulfil our mandatory obligation and get it out of the way. If it was Kell Brook, fine. If it's Lee Purdy, no problem."

Purdy enters the bout off the back of four straight stoppage victories. His last defeat saw him finish on the wrong side of a thriller with Colin Lynes.

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