Dave Coldwell pondered long and hard when making his return to the gym and corner. A variety of successes as the brains behind Ryan Rhodes and Kell Brook for periods, Coldwell retired his pads and ideas and placed his desire on promoting as his Coldwell Boxing brand acquired high acclaim with excellent shows frequently taking place throughout the North of England with some even receiving Sky TV exposure. A call from Tony Bellew, a friend of Coldwell’s for over decade, changed everything and 2016 was the year that the details of that conversation became a reality as the Liverpool man became world champion and Coldwell enjoyed his greatest night in the sport.

To join Bellew’s success, Coldwell also kept Jamie McDonnell undefeated by the narrowest of margins with a tough win over Liberio Solis and Gavin McDonnell was guided towards the top of the WBC rankings and will challenge for the strap in 2017. Coldwell is delighted with his work this year and is in no doubt what the highlight was.

“Goodison Park back in May was the stuff of dreams,” reflects Coldwell. “So much went into the night in terms of preperation and what went on behind the scenes. There was so much pressure on Tony because this was really the last chance for him and he went out there and delivered a brilliant performance that no one thought he was capable of. He’s made a defence of his belt and it’s another big one for him next as David Haye is waiting and that’s what he have to get ready for. 2016 was absolutely superb for Bellew but I’ve got a big feeling that next year is going to be better.”

On the McDonnell’s, Coldwell added, “Jamie was pushed hard last time and I’ve made it clear in several interviews that the fight could’ve gone either way against Solis but there’s so much more to Jamie than that performance. We had a good win earlier in the year and add that to the Solis result and we can take that as a positive year and go again in 2017. Jamie wants huge fights and big opportunities and he’s prepared to work hard for them so hopefully next year can be a vital one for him. Gavin is improving all the time and he’s took the traditional route to this title shot and worked really hard for it. He’s close to a big chance against the excellent Rey Vargas for the WBC title and the lineage on that belt at super-bantamweight is really spectacular and Gavin’s name can join that list so imagine that as an incentive.”

Another Coldwell charge desperate to make a big impact is heavyweight contender, David Price. The Liverpool puncher was vocal about missing out on the recent Anthony Joshua opportunity and Coldwell believes his man has to remain patient and keep winning.

“I understand Pricey’s frustration because his losses have a cloud of doubt over them and the momentum he had a few years ago has been taken from him unfairly. He’s desperate to be a champion and he’s worked so hard since joining me and we just need that right opportunity to show people how far we’ve come in only a short time. The new year has to bring chances for Price and he’s got a good team that I think can deliver for him. When he gets those chances he’s going to show everyone what he’s capable of.”