Malmesbury fighter Hughes to get career back on track after hand and knee injuries
MALMESBURY fighter Joe Hughes is ready to get back in the ring 356 days since his last bout.
A catalogue of misfortune has kept Hughes inactive but he maintains he is in A1 shape ahead of his match with the experienced William Warburton at Trowbridge Civic Hall on Friday, September 27.
Hand and knee injuries have stalled the professional career of the former Senior ABA light welterweight champion since his last victory against Mark McKray at the Oasis in Swindon on October 6 last year.
Joe even put himself forward for Sky Sports’ Prizefighter series and was first reserve to grab some much-needed TV exposure. But even when one of the contestants was bitten on the eyebrow by a mosquito on the eve of the competition, a frustrated Hughes did not get the call-up.
Such is Hughes’s reputation for prodigious hitting that he has not been able to find an opponent in his own light welterweight category. Just to get his career back on track, he has opted to take on Warburton, a natural welterweight who will have height, reach and weight advantage.
“It feels like forever since my last bout so I am just delighted to be getting back in the ring, even if it is against a journeyman fighter like Warburton,” said Hughes.
Joe will have to be on his guard, however, because Warburton, despite losing 50 of his 61 fights, caused a major upset when stopping up-and-coming Chris Higgs in the seventh round last year to end the Lydney boxer’s unbeaten record.
“I have been sparring well with the likes of Nick Blackwell (Commonwealth Middleweight title challenger who tops the Trowbridge bill) and Danny Butler (European Middleweight title contender) and for the first time in a long while I am pain free. Even for my last two fights, I could not do an adequate amount of roadwork due to my knee,” said Hughes, who turned 23 last month.
“I am sure to be ring rusty but I feel in great shape and only on Sunday I sparred ten rounds against five different boxers who took alternate rounds against me.” Tickets for the P J Rowson-promoted Trowbridge programme are available from Hughes himself on 07878 454570.