The Scottish Heavyweight Championship last took place in 1951: George VI was king; Ezzard Charles was world heavyweight champion; Nat King Cole had the hit Too Young; Marlon Brando and Vivien Leigh lit up the big screen in A Streetcar Named Desire; Tottenham Hotspur were champions of the Football League and the VCR was invented.
Now, 71 years later, the ‘vacant’ tag will be removed from the title when Glasgow giants Nick ‘The Glasgow Warrior’ Campbell (4-0-0, 4 KOs) and Jay ‘The Ghost’ McFarlane (12-5- 0.5 KOs) clash for the Caledonian mantle on the undercard of the Unified World Super Lightweight title clash between Josh Taylor and Jack Catterall on Saturday, February 26, promoted by BOXXER and Top Rank, at the OVO Hydro, Glasgow, live and exclusively on Sky Sport.
When Glasgow rivals George Stern and Hugh McDonald challenged for the title at the Recreation Ground in Alloa on 22 June 1951, Hibernian FC won the Scottish Division A title; future Prime Minister Gordon Brown was born and boxing legend Ken Buchanan was just six years old.
Stern came out on top that night, winning in the seventh round after McDonald was disqualified for a low blow, but Campbell and McFarlane both promise to bring a more convincing end to their fight.
Campbell, a former professional rugby player with the Glasgow Warriors and Jersey Reds, has won a perfect undefeated four fights by KO in just eight rounds of action. The six-foot giant is also on a mission to become the first-ever Scotsman to win the British heavyweight title.
“This is a huge battle card and a great opportunity to shine in my home city and live on Sky Sports. I’m shocked that the title hasn’t been battled for so long, but it will be tight around my waist by the end of the fight,” said Campbell.
“McFarlane is a tough guy, but he’s just another guy who gets in the way of my goal and what I want to achieve in the sport. I strive to put in a thorough professional performance and get that break. The British title is my goal, step by step McFarlane is my first stop to get the Scottish title.”
McFarlane has gone through many ups and downs in his 23 years, but the larger-than-life character sees this as another step towards his dream of becoming a champion. When he was 10, he spent time in a Caribbean orphanage with his brother after a vacation where his parents were arrested for drug smuggling.
He was living in temporary housing when he signed his first professional contract and after just two wins he landed a Gennady Golovkin v Daniel Jacobs undercard at the iconic Madison Square Garden and was then back in his scatter flat.
“Campbell can’t beat me, if my head is straight, I’m the only one who can beat me. He may be six feet and a monster, but everyone is the same height as they lie. It makes no difference to me, I have the experience and power over him and this is a golden opportunity for me to get me where I want to be,” McFarlane said.
“This is the fight of my life, winning the Scottish Heavyweight title will be bigger for me than Andy Murray winning Wimbledon. I’ve been through a lot in life, but boxing has saved me and I want to make history in a sport that has served me well.”