Nick Westby: Brook needs a rival to help grab spotlight

Kell Brook beat Jo Jo Dan on Saturday (Picture: Dean Woolley).
Kell Brook beat Jo Jo Dan on Saturday (Picture: Dean Woolley).
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The sporting adage that you are only as good as your opponent is one that rings true with Sheffield’s world boxing champion Kell Brook.

The 28-year-old has carved out a highly commendable record of 34 wins and zero defeats in his 10-year professional career, the last of which was his comprehensive win over Jo Jo Dan in the first defence of his IBF welterweight title in Sheffield on Saturday night.

Coming just six months after he was stabbed in the leg while on holiday in Tenerife – a wound that nearly left him not walking again, never mind boxing – Brook certainly has a great human interest angle.

Yet his first title defence was not one widely acknowledged by the greater British boxing public. It was shown live on Sky and in America, but the BBC did not even want to pay for the rights to cover the fight on the radio.

Their attitude is symptomatic of the continued indifference towards Brook, whose record in the ring, while flawless, perhaps lacks the great rivalry that can capture a public’s imagination.

Where is the George Groves to his Carl Froch, the Chris Eubank to his Nigel Benn?

After his latest win and the doors that could unlock, maybe he will finally get the nemesis who will help launch, and shape, his career – Amir Khan.