Tion Gibbs is planning to resume his chase for the English lightweight title after another ring run-out on home turf.
He’s back in action at the H Suite in Edgbaston, Birmingham, when BCB Promotions host another Friday fight night on March 24.
Gibbs, from Yardley in the second city, has the opportunity to record back-to-back victories, over six rounds, with his first contest of 2023.
The 28-year-old closed last year with a 60-54 points success against Jamie Quinn, which was his first fight under coach Max McCracken.
He also returned to winning ways after disappointingly tumbling out of the three-round, eight-man, one-night, winner-take-all BOXXER tournament, at the first hurdle.
Despite being a pre-competition favourite, Gibbs was outpointed, on a split decision, to Scott Melvin, which resulted in his first pro defeat. He now stands at 9-1, all over-the-distance.
Gibbs is a former Midlands lightweight champion, who relinquished his crown without making a defence, The title has since been lifted by Ishmael Ellis and Joe Ducker.
That area dominance was established after 10 tough rounds against Jack O’Keefe, who had to climb off the floor in the first round, where Gibbs also sustained an injury.
He said: “When the big fights come up, I need to be ready for them and this is another step towards that. Hopefully, I can get a shot at the English title (Reece Mould is the holder).
“When I won the Midlands (title), it was supposed to be an eliminator for the English (champion), so I shouldn’t be far away from contention.
“Not only did I not get a shot at the English, I also vacated the Midlands without defending it! It wasn’t my choice, other fighters asked to box for it and they wouldn’t fight me.
“But I enjoyed the moment, I’d sparred with Jack O’Keefe a few times and got the better of it. No disrespect, but I was really confident that I was going to beat him.
“I suffered a concussion, in the first round, from a clash of heads. It wasn’t enjoyable going through 10 rounds with a splitting headache, trying to fend someone off and still win.
“I didn’t really change anything about my boxing, I’ve been doing this for a long time and I think that my ability got me through. It was a good result for me.
“The headache I got wouldn’t subside and, three weeks later, I went to hospital. They told me that I still had a mild concussion and not to spar for a few more weeks.
“The BOXXER tournament didn’t really suit me, to be honest, and I don’t intend on ever fighting three rounds again. I changed my tactics and it didn’t work.
“I’d damaged my right hand, in sparring, so I only got to spar once, in an eight-week camp. I hit my opponent on the top of his head and, after that, I got shooting pains in my hand.
“I boxed on the back-foot, against Scott Melvin, and that was what really allowed him to beat me. I know that, over longer distances, it would be different.
“I’m over that now and I’ve already boxed a six-rounder since (with Jamie Quinn). I wanted to get rid of him, but I completely dominated the rounds.
“I’ve not been active enough, in the past, and that’s what needs to change. If I can do that, everything else should fall into place. I’m enjoying my career again.”
Tickets for the H Suite bill are available, priced at £40 standard or £75 VIP ringside with buffet, directly from the boxers or by visiting myfighttickets.com.