Shannon Willey is prepared to go the extra mile to get his pro boxing career started.
He will hit the road to appear at the H Suite in Edgbaston, Birmingham, on the Sunday afternoon of February 13, as part of a show staged by BCB Promotions.
Willey travels from Exeter to take his place in the home corner and is willing to box away again, if he’s successful, before a proposed show in Devon later this year.
It’s far from making a pro debut in his backyard, but the 27-year-old is keen to do whatever it takes to make his paid bow.
The punching plasterer has a grounding of 44 amateur bouts, with 19 wins, which were mostly for Lympstone Boxing Club, after starting out at Exeter BC.
He’s also boxed overseas, in Australia, where he went up against the likes of Valentin Kondakov, who represented Samoa at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Willey now trains in Torquay, under the tutelage of coach Gareth Hogg, and is hoping to work towards area honours in the super lightweight division.
He said: “I’m looking forward to my debut. I’m sure there will be a bit of nerves there, but a lot of excitement, as well, which will keep me sharp.
“I haven’t boxed in nearly two years, it was literally a week before the first lockdown (pandemic) and I’d got through the first round of the England Elite Championships.
“I had a long amateur career, for about eight years, although I found it tough at first. I only won about three out of 12 when I was at Exeter.
“I did a lot better with Lympstone, I also went travelling and had three amateur fights when I was in Australia, against some really good lads. I thought I’d been stitched up!
“I would describe myself as a pressure fighter and body puncher, who boxes at mid-range and looks to throw screw shots. I’m quite an all-rounder.
“I think I have more of a pro style, so I want to work towards something like titles and go further than I did in the amateurs. To become the Southern area champion would be great.
“I left my amateur career behind when the pandemic hit and I feel that it’s definitely the right time to turn pro. I can’t wait to make a start and get going.
“I could have waited for a home show, in the summer, but this chance came along and I’m hoping to get out again soon after. I want to be 2-0, as quickly as possible.”
Tickets for the H Suite bill are available now, priced at £40 standard or £75 VIP ringside with buffet, directly from the boxers or by visiting myfighttickets.com.