No Limit Boxing boss George Rose has teased the prospect of Novocastrian Brandon Grach potentially headlining one of the promotion company's next Newcastle fight nights.
Grach, a heavyweight from Whitebridge, produced a stunning knock-out victory over Sydney's Liam Talivaa last Wednesday in one of the fights before Nikita Tszyu's triumph over Dylan Biggs in the main event at Newcastle Entertainment Centre.
It was Grach's second professional fight but the nature of his win, which came early in the second round after both fighters had been knocked down in the first, left Rose, who has a natural affinity for the heavyweights, excited about the former mine operator's prospects.
"When you've got guys like Brandon Grach doing stuff like that, by the end of next year he could be headlining his own show in Newcastle," Rose said, speaking to the Newcastle Herald.
"Genuinely, if someone like that has a great year, and builds themselves up ... I'd love to have a Newcastle-based headliner."
Last week's card was the fifth boxing event No Limit has held in Newcastle over the past three years.
Tim Tszyu headlined two cards in 2021, while former NRL player Paul Gallen and Nikita were the main fights of two events last year.
Nikita has now become a headline act in his own right, and Rose has vowed to bring the youngest Tszyu back to town for another fight.
But with Nikita's profile fastly rising, and the 25-year-old likely to join Tim on a card in Las Vegas next March when the NRL is on in the city, whether Nikita is on No Limit's next Newcastle card remains to be seen.
Rose said the company would return to Newcastle next year but they would carefully consider the main event. Last week's fight night drew a decent crowd, but it was short of a sell-out.
"It's been over 12 months since we've been here, and that's too long in my opinion," Rose said.
"We need to be here at least once a year, and twice would be nice. We'll definitely be back next year at some stage. I think we've got to have the right headline, each time."
Grach, now 30, was a talented amateur boxer in his youth but gave it away at 17 to pursue other interests. He took it up again after a 12-year hiatus as a way to lose weight, but had a promising amateur fight last year and decided to turn professional. He is now training full-time, walking away from his mining job to fully dedicated himself to the sport.
Trained by Nathan Swadling out of BoxCamp gym in Gateshead, Grach is not tied to No Limit but expressed interest last week in taking further opportunities they offer. He said he was willing to take on "any heavyweight in the country".
"He's somebody that we'd love to talk to about what he wants to do next year," Rose said. "Look at who there is in the Australian heavyweights, because there's a few heavyweights that have been looking for fights. There's a few opportunities there. If we can keep building that division, it would be great."
No Limit will have held 14 events this year after its Sydney card featuring Sam Goodman and Liam Wilson next month. Rose said they would hold a similar amount in 2024, and Newcastle would slot in around some of the events featuring their top stars, like Tim Tszyu.
"Most of our schedule starts from the top," Rose said.
"Tim is obviously currently a world champion, so locking in his dates and then looking at others. Sam Goodman is on the cusp of a world title, Liam Wilson is on the cusp of a world title.
"So there's plenty of guys that have got big fights next year.
"If we can lock them away, and then look at the other gaps on the calendar, because we want to keep the fights regular.
"I think there is a really good hunger for the fights at the moment. With nights like [Newcastle], we keep doing that, it's only going to keep growing."