Walker Transitioning Into Long Haul Fighter
Conah Walker believes he’s transitioning into a long-haul fighter as he prepares for his second six-round contest in succession. Walker has yet to complete his first 12 months as a professional, but is lined up for his sixth bout over that time period.
He next features on BCB Promotions’ show at the Venue, on Dudley high street. The afternoon offering, on July 28, has been titled ‘Sunday Service.’
The 24-year-old welterweight has five wins, with two stoppages, and stepped up from four rounds for his last outing.
Someone’s ‘0’ had to go for him do vanquish Nathan Bendon, who was also undefeated, at the same Town Hall in May. Walker had to work for him to have his hand raised, overcoming Bendon by a 58-56 points margin on the score-card of referee Kevin Parker.
‘The Wolf,’ from Wolverhampton, has set himself the target of becoming the Midlands champion, a mantle which Kaisee Benjamin currently possesses.
The Black Country prospect will have a boxing legend leading him into battle, as he’s coached by two-weight world champion Ricky Hatton. Walker is a graduate of Merridale Boxing Club in his home city and left the amateur ranks with a record of 30 wins from 33 fights. Glories in the vest included two national titles in the England Development Championships and a run to the national semi-finals of the England Elite competition.
He said: “Camp for this one has been wicked, perhaps the best one that I’ve ever had. I’ve put the hours in and I’m at 100 per cent. “I’m up in Hyde (Greater Manchester) during the week at Ricky’s gym and I’m training two to three times a day, then keeping my running up at weekends. “You don’t play at boxing, so I can’t be half-hearted with my training. I’ve had a wide range of sparring, with some good lads, so I’m feeling sharp. “I turned pro last September and this is my sixth fight, so I’m pleased with where I am but there’s always room for improvement.
“I had a good opponent last time, he was unbeaten like me and came to win, so it was a decent result for me to come out on top.
“I thought I’d done enough to win every round, I didn’t really understand why the referee gave a couple to him but that’s his decision. “I learned a lot from it, I should have used my right hand more and I was getting clipped in certain areas where a journeyman wouldn’t have thrown punches at me. “I still reckon that if I’d upped the pace a bit earlier, which he didn’t like when I did eventually do it, I’d have got him out of there. “I’ve got another six-rounder now and I want to put on a more polished performance this time. That’s my incentive. “I’m expecting to be out again after the summer and I want to come back with an eight-rounder. After that, it won’t be long before I’m ready for a Midlands title shot. “I’m confident we can get that sorted out and I’m more than up for it. After that, there’s no going back, so I’ll take it as it comes.”
Two hometown favourites will be in action elsewhere on the card, with Danny Ball and Connor Lee Jones slated to appear. Ball, from Kingswinford, came close to becoming the Midlands welterweight champion in December, pushing title holder Benjamin to a points draw. He was then matched for a shot at WBC Youth Intercontinental boss Jon Miguez in Spain, but an injury to his opponent saw the opportunity scuppered. He instead focuses on on adding to his eight wins from nine contests, with three TKOs including two in the first round. Two of those successes took place at the Venue. Dudley’s Jones will be looking to extend his unbeaten start in the lightweight ranks, after racking up three spotless points successes. The Lions Boxing Club graduate, an England international as a junior amateur, has vanquished experienced foes in Liam Richards, Kristian Laight and Ibrar Riyaz. Kyle Williams is another to feature in the home corner, determined to get back to winning ways and rebuild after his setback for British honours. Williams, from Wolverhampton, was handed his first defeat on the big stage in April, against Kash Farooq and relinquished the English bantamweight crown for the opportunity. His next task is to add to his 10 wins, with three TKOs, having also picked up a Midlands belt along the way before claiming national glory. James Beech Jr has relinquished the area strap at super feather, as he’s looking to come down to super bantam. The second-generation fighter makes the short trip from nearby Bloxwich, featuring in the paid ranks for a 10th time after nine wins, with three stoppages. He’s the son of Jimmy Beech, who featured 31 times as a pro at lightweight between 1999 and 2008. He’s a graduate of Pleck Boxing Club, who he featured for 80 times with 50 wins.
Reigning Midlands flyweight title holder Ijaz Ahmed has already defended his belt once, after claiming the area strap. Ahmed beat Conor Blackshaw for the vacant belt and then saw off fellow Brummie Matt Windle to keep it, with a keep-busy affair now lined up. Alex Florence is unbeaten in the super lightweight ranks, with five victories and one stoppage of his own. ‘Pinky,’ from Ledbury in Herefordshire, will register his first bout of 2019 having passed his two-year anniversary as a pro. Female flyweight Dani Hodges, from Burntwood, will be determined to get back to winning ways after a first points defeat. It took Commonwealth Games gold medallist Lisa Whiteside to beat her, a first setback since a TKO loss to Eva Naranjo in Spain two years ago. An eventful 2019 has also seen the ‘Pocket Rocket’ vanquish Lauren Parker and Roz Mari Silyanova, adding to victories over Sonia Klos and Teodora Hristova. Tickets, priced at £35 standard or £65 VIP ringside with a buffet and waitress service, are on sale now. It will be £40 for entry on the door. For more information, contact the boxers.