04 Jul COLLINS JR & WARD TO CLASH FOR CELTIC LIGHT-HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE
Steve Collins Jr and Steven Ward will collide for the BUI Celtic light-heavyweight title on the grand stage of Windsor Park on August 18 – live on BT Sport.
Belfast’s Ward (7-0-KO3) will enjoy home advantage in the stadium against Dublin’s Collins Jr (12-1-1-KO4), who fought for the Irish belt last year and was narrowly denied by Paddy McDonagh.
The night already features a host of huge names with Carl Frampton facing Luke Jackson, Tyson Fury continuing his comeback and Paddy Barnes fighting Cristofer Rosales for a world title.
Collins Jr said: “I’ve changed my life completely since the McDonagh fight and got my act together. My weight is down, I’ve changed trainer and I’m really putting time into my boxing.
“The fear of not being able to accomplish what I’m capable of has woken me up. I thought I’d beat McDonagh easily and when I lost I realised I was doing things wrong and wasn’t taking it seriously enough.
“It’s business only in this fight. I’ve no animosity against Steven but he’s a great scalp to take and I asked to fight him. He’s a guy who brings a lot to the table and puts bums on seats. It’ll be a great atmosphere.
“I think I can knock on the door for world titles if I keep going the way I am. If I put the right work in and spend the time perfecting my craft then I’m capable of anything. It’s all to be determined by myself and the work I put in.”
Ward said: “It’s the biggest night of my career and a massive night for boxing in general.
“It adds to it that it’s a team campaign and I’m training with the likes of Carl. We bounce off one another and when you all have the same target, there’s no cutting corners.
“I know Steve and he’s a nice guy. He was fighting in Belfast and we met and had a chat not long ago. He’s a decent fellow. He’s a bit smaller than me but I’m a freakish size for the weight.
“So many people come out to support me in Belfast and I’m truly grateful. Every show I’ve been on, I’ve been bombarded for tickets. I’m really grateful people spend their hard-earned cash to watch me fight.
“I did work in the community in Monkstown so I know the money these people have is hard-earned. For so many of them to spend it on coming to watch me fight is amazing.”
Also featuring at the stadium will be WBO European middleweight king Luke Keeler, who makes the first defence of the title he won by outpointing Conrad Cummings last time out.
Marco McCullough will continue his journey back to title contention and local knockout sensation Lewis Crocker seeks to keep up his flawless run of stoppage victories as a professional.