Willey Comes Home

Next up might well have been pro debut time for Shannon Willey had he not decided to throw caution to the mind some months earlier. 

He comes back home when BCB Promotions stage their first show at the Riviera International Centre in Torquay, with showtime set for Friday September 2. 

Willey makes the short trip to the venue from where he lives in Exeter and it’s a well-worn road, as he trains in Torquay under the tutelage of Gareth Hogg. 

The 28-year-old welterweight instead turned over six months ago, being aware of a fight date in Devon down the line, but not wanting to wait so long. 

He instead travelled over 150 miles away to Edgbaston, in Birmingham, competing under the BCB banner and getting going with a points success over Naeem Ali (February 13).

Another ring assignment loomed for Willey in May, back in the West Midlands but this time Wolverhampton, on another BCB offering at the Hangar Events Venue. 

That time he outpointed MJ Hall, with both of his pro wins so far coming by virtue of a 40-37 scoreline, meaning no rounds lost as yet in the paid ranks. 

Willey also has a grounding from his amateur career, racking up 44 bouts, 19 of them wins, which were mostly for Lympstone Boxing Club, after starting out at Exeter BC. 

He said: “I’ve been working harder than ever in training, all of the lads from the gym who are on the show have. It’s an easy one to get up for, so we’ve all been pushing each other.

“I won’t let the occasion get to me. There are two ways to look at it, you can either feel pressure or you can thrive off it. I’m excited to be a part of this. 

“It’s time to put boxing back on the map down here again and I’ll be doing what I can to stand out. It would be great to get a few more of the locals following me. 

“I’ve already got a couple of wins, on the road, and that wouldn’t have happened if I’d waited to be on a home show before I made my debut. 

“I’m glad I took the risk, I don’t mind boxing away and I think that will stand me in good stead. I won’t be bothered about fighting anyone, anywhere. 

“I was hoping to be 3-0, I had a third one lined up (on July 10), but it fell through at the last minute, due to an issue with my opponent. That was frustrating. 

“I had a couple of weeks off and then I was straight back training so, all told, it feels like my camp has been for about 15 weeks! I’ve got no excuses for not being fit. 

“I’m trying to make myself better, it’s all about picking up all the little bits of experience and getting your name out there. It’s going well and I need to keep that up.”

Tickets for ‘Rumble on the Riviera’ are available now, priced at £40 standard or £75 VIP ringside with buffet, directly from the boxers or by visiting myfighttickets.com.

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