People might have been wondering where I’ve been. I tore my achilles tendon a few months ago and it’s been a long road back. I took myself away from things, let the other guys in my division get on with their careers and concentrated on getting myself fit again. I haven’t been hiding away and, don’t worry, I’m back and hungrier than ever.
32Red have been following my recovery and you’ll be able to see what I’ve been doing soon.
I can’t believe it’s more than a year since I lost to Ronnie Clark. That night, people realised that I’m not just a pretty fighter. I can get down and dirty and fight if I have to. I can’t remember too many other fighters losing a fight but coming out with so much credit but believe me, that didn’t mean much at the time.
I remember sitting in my dressing room feeling absolutely exhausted and gutted but when I think back, an unbeaten record was the only thing I lost that night. I gained so much more.
I know what it takes to win hard fights now. The next time I’m stood across from somebody like that I’ll be able to think to myself, ‘I’ve been tired, I’ve been hurt and knocked down on national television. I know I’ve got the heart and balls to get through that. I’ve been through the fire now. Have you?’
The torn achilles was a serious injury but I think the time I spent out of the ring has done me good. I’ve always been a busy fighter and there has always been another fight to get ready for. When you’re winning, you just go from fight to fight. Not being able to train properly forced me to sit back and think about things and since I got fit again, I’ve been able to work on my weaknesses.
I just feel like a totally different fighter. I’ve learned so much. A lot of fighters don’t get to understand that until they’re coming towards the end of their careers. I’m 25 years old and I’m coming back armed with all that knowledge.
I’m back sprinting, sparring, and training hard. I’ve always given absolutely everything to the sport but I can honestly say that I’ve never felt as determined and confident as I do now. It’s as if everything has just clicked into place in my mind.
I get back in the ring on April 26th and should hopefully be back fighting on BT before the summer. After that we’ll see what happens. I’m gonna be chasing names and titles and my target is the British super featherweight title.
Sam Bowen has been on my mind for a few years. I remember one Christmas I was fighting in Newcastle. I checked my phone after the fight and I’d been tagged into a post on twitter with a photo of Sam holding a glass of champagne talking about the English title. I know Sam is a good fighter but so am I and as well as growing up mentally in the last few months, I’ve grown physically.
I’m not one of these fighters who just overlooks what any opponent can do. I give credit for what they can do well and prepare myself for it but I just feel like I’m mature enough to make sure I do what I’m good at rather than getting drawn into my opponents fight and I know I’ve got what it takes inside to come through if things get away from the plan. I’m different now.
Sam’s got the hype now and beating him would just prove that I really am what people thought I was but I’m not bothered who gets put in front of me, I’m not going to be taking any backward steps.