Joel McIntyre reckons that his English light heavyweight title defence is a must-win for both parties as he prepares to take on Ricky Summers.
the pair go head to head when BCB Promotions return to the Hangar Events Venue, in Wolverhampton, for fight night on Friday March 10. The show will be broadcast live on Fightzone with this clash also being shown on BBC iPlayer, the BBC Sport App & Website. Find out more at fightzone.uk.
McIntyre travels down from Portsmouth to defend his standing, after Summers’ camp won the purse bids lodged with the British Boxing Board of Control.
The English champion is a two-time holder of the belt, having claimed national glory on a revenge mission against Miles Shinkwin.
Shinkwin had outpointed McIntyre, in his first title shot, for Central area honours, only for the tables to be turned when the English crown was on the line.
McIntyre would relinquish the strap to Liam Conroy, after being down and stopped in two, but he would bounce back and become a champion again.
That would only be after another opportunity went awry, Shinkwin again beating him for the then vacant English crown, although he would come again.
Last year would bring redemption for McIntyre, as he overcome Chad Sugden by stoppage to lift the English belt, for a second time, registering his 20th win as a professional.
The fearless 35-year-old then jumped in with the world-rated Lyndon Arthur and would fall in two rounds, leaving him with a point to prove when tackling Summers.
McIntyre said: “This fight was mandated late last year, but we were talking about a voluntary defence before that, which I was happy to do. Now the guy has got his wish.
“I’m going up there to be hosted and I’ve had more than a few away days, in my time. It doesn’t matter whether it’s in Wolverhampton, my back-yard or the North Pole.
“The last time I won the English title (over Chad Sugden, by TKO in round eight), I went up there and upset about 600 of his fans, so I know what it takes.
“I like to keep it simple, but I’m also very reactive. My style is to either counter punch, or stand there and have a war. I’m game, I don’t mind taking a shot to give one.
“The mission is to go up there and spoil the party, but making a defence is different than being a challenger. I want to do a job on him and start 2023 on a bright note.
“I’m not interested in retiring, so I’m going to be holding on to this title very tightly. Me and Ricky (Summers) are both coming towards the end of our careers, though.
“We are hungry, because we are in the same position. He’s got to win this or probably pack us boxing, the same as me. That’s how important it could be.
“I lost myself in December, I didn’t do well at all. I got caught and stopped, even if it was against a top-level fighter, so I’ve got to get people believing in me again.
“My main quest is still to become the British champion and I’m sure it’s the same for Ricky. This is all but a final eliminator for that.”