ITV pull the plug on live boxing
ITV have confirmed that they are pulling out of live boxing at the end of 2009.
It is a body blow to world champion Carl Froch, whose WBC title fight with Jean Pascal in Nottingham last year attracted 2.7m viewers.
An ITV spokesman said the decision had been taken purely on financial grounds, stressing that free-to-air boxing was "no longer economically sustainable" in the current climate.
ITV, and cash-strapped Setanta, declined to screen Froch's thrilling first title defence against American Jermain Taylor.
However, ITV did show it the following day.
Promoter Mick Hennessy is currently negotiating to get Froch's next fight, which may now be put back until early September, live on air.
Froch has been linked with a host of top names since his battling win over Taylor.
Men at the head of the queue are IBF champion Lucian Bute and the veteran Bernard Hopkins.
Froch has been continually linked with Kelly Pavlik.
Pay-per-view company HBO are keen on the clash and they could meet early in 2010.
Mansfield-based Alex Spitko beat Chris Black on points at the Radisson Hotel in Glasgow. He had Black down in the last.
But stable-mate Peter Jones, from Derby – having his second pro fight – lost on points to Eddie Doyle.
Trainer Matt Scriven, out since being cut against Ciaran Healey in Belfast, hopes to box Danny Butler in Bristol tonight.
Robin Hood's Andy Bell is fighting fit and ready to make a comeback. He has been banned since losing his British super-flyweight title fight with Lee Haskins last November.