It’s a homecoming for Paige Goodyear and her team as she boxes on home turf for the first time as a professional.
She’s a part of BCB Promotions’ final bill of the year at the Hangar Events Venue, in Wolverhampton, on the Friday night of December 16.
Goodyear, head coach Darren McDermott and assistant head coach Steve O’Rourke are all from the Black Country, so are going back to their roots.
Dudley duo Goodyear and McDermott are from Sedgley and Woodsetton, respectively, and have been together since the start of her pro boxing journey, at the age of 10.
Ex-pro McDermott is a former Midlands and English middleweight champion, also challenging for the British and Commonwealth titles, before retiring in 2010.
‘Macca’ then opened Brooklands Boxing Club, an amateur gym, with Goodyear becoming one of his first pupils and, definitely, the most successful.
O’Rourke is also involved in the amateur ranks, running Wodensborough Boxing Club, which helped to produce 2020 Olympics silver medalist Ben Whittaker.
Goodyear took bronze at the 2018 Youth World Championships and captained the England team, while also reaching the quarter-finals, at that year’s European Youth tournament.
The 21-year-old last featured at amateur level in 2019, finishing up with an unpaid record of 25 victories from 32 bouts, claiming four national titles along the way.
Her pro debut didn’t come until April of this year, though, due to the pandemic and both outings since have come on cards promoted by Susannah Schofield OBE.
The introduction saw her outpoint tough Argentinian Linda Karen Ascencio, edging her out by a point in a 39-38 call, in Sheffield.
Goodyear was then paired with the experienced Ester Koncena, at Rotherham’s Magna Centre, who had only ever been stopped by future world champion Savannah Marshall.
‘The Hammer’ again had to perform to see off the Czech Republic’s Koncena, through a 39-37 points scoreline, and rated each occasion as a good learning fight.
Goodyear said: “That’s what I want, to be challenged. I’m not looking for push-overs, it’s about progression. I hadn’t fought for over two years, when I made my debut.
“My opponent was a tough cookie but, as soon as I got my boxing head on, she couldn’t handle the speed and tempo that I’m capable of.
“It was the same in the last one (against Koncena). I had another slow start, which was frustrating, then I switched on, upped the pace and wore her down with body shots.
“I feel like I’m suited to the pro game, I’ve got the boxing IQ to do well and, this time, the game-plan it to start fast and keep that up, until the last bell.
“Everyone has been asking me when I was going to be on a show around here, so I’m really looking forward to it. It must be a good five years since the last time (for Brooklands).
“It’s great to have ‘Macca’ and Steve with me and in my corner, I’ve trained hard with them and I’m always developing, so it’s going well.
“I could have stayed as an amateur and the one thing that I didn’t do was go to the Olympics. I might have had a shot at the Commonwealth Games, too.
“I was at the final assessment stage (with Team GB), but I decided to turn pro instead. I’m giving it a go and, up to now, I don’t have any regrets.”
Tickets for the Hangar bill are available, priced at £40 standard or £75 VIP ringside with buffet, from the BCB Box Office by calling 07493 582 261 or visiting myfighttickets.com.