Feature | Sep 22 2015

Britain versus the world – a study of home advantage

Does Frank Warren deserve his reputation for getting home advantage and are Matchroom hard done by? Danny Flexen investigates
Ricky Burns
Ricky Burns with trainer Tony Simms (L) during the public work out  |  Action Images/Peter Cziborra

IN the last few years, Matchroom particularly have had to fend off criticism – from pundits and fans alike – that they negotiate home advantage for their fighters in world title contests less often than rival promoter Frank Warren. But how much of this castigation is due to misconception rather than reality? I endeavored to find out.

I documented all WBC, WBA Super, WBA World, IBF and WBO title fights (no Interim belts) involving a British boxer versus a non-British opponent in the last five years (September 1 2010-August 31 2015) to ascertain if the common consensus matches the actual facts.

The most glaring result is that home ‘advantage’ is thus called for a very good reason. Of the 65 world title bouts under consideration, 34 fights afforded home court to the British boxer, 31 saw them forced to travel. Of the 31 globetrotters, only nine (29 per cent) emerged victorious, while one drew and 21 were defeated. Of the 34 homebodies, 26 (76 per cent) were triumphant, three drew and just five lost.


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