Ricky Summers insists he is even better than before as he eyes a return to the national title scene in the near future.
The 30-year-old returns to the squared circle on April 21st for BCB Promotions’ “Time To Shine” show at Walsall Town Hall, sponsored by Grosvenor Casino Walsall.
Summers suffered the first defeat of his career last July against Frank Buglioni, taking the Londoner all the way but beaten on points for the British Light Heavyweight title at the O2 Arena.
After responding to that first professional defeat with a points victory over eight rounds against Gonzalo Romero in Bilston the following November, Summers will now take on Bulgarian fighter Tayar Mehmed (7-31) in Walsall.
“Digger” was originally set to fight for the IBO Intercontinental title, only for his opponent to pull out late in the build-up.
But Summers is still intent on putting on a good show at the top of the bill at Town Hall on Saturday night.
“I’m more than ready for six rounds,” said Summers. “I was ready for the IBO over 10 but my opponent pulled out and within two weeks we couldn’t get a replacement.
“I put the news out there on my Facebook because I don’t want people to think I’m fighting for the IBO title and then I’m doing six rounds.
“People want to see me in title fights but I’m going to go in there and put on a good boxing display. I want to go for the stoppage and I’ve been pushing hard in the gym.
“He’s never been stopped at cruiser or light heavyweight, he’s only ever been stopped at super heavyweight and that was by Sam Sexton.
“So if I get him out of there it’ll look good at my record. If not, I’ll be getting the rounds in.”
Not only does Summers feel ready to get back into title contention, but he feels he is even better placed to do so than when he fought Buglioni last year.
“I took my first loss but I bounced back in the right way, and I feel I’ve improved massively from that fight,” Summers said.
“I just feel like now I want to get this fight out of the way next week and then get into some big fights domestically.
“I want to box for the English title - my goal is to fight Liam Conroy, or even fight Callum Johnson for the British title. I’d fight either of those two.
“I think Callum is a very good fighter and very underrated. He’s unbeaten as a pro and has a good amateur pedigree. He’s a good all-round solid fighter and a worthy champion, but I think I’d cause him problems.
“Fighting on the big stage at the O2 was completely different to the smaller shows. I’d never done that level, never done a press conference in my life.
“Now I’ve been there and done that, I’ll better myself next time. If I was to fight Frank again I think I’d beat him but it’s one of those things.
“No disrespect to Mehmed but I’m past that level now. This is something to keep me busy and hopefully something comes up after the fight.
“He’s had a few fights at light-heavyweight. You’ve got to be careful and you can’t overlook anyone but I’d expect to beat him quite well.”
And Summers, above all, is grateful to all of the fans who are coming out to support him on Saturday.
“First and foremost I want to thank the people who’ve come out to buy tickets,” he said.
“I know money is hard for them - I know it’s been a frustrating year, having the Buglioni fight and nothing coming from it.
“So thanks to the fans for coming out to support me on these shows because if you don’t sell tickets you don’t fight.”
Tickets, priced at £40 standard unreserved and £80 VIP Ringside, are on sale now from the Walsall Town Hall Box Office 0845 111 2900.
The weigh-in and aftershow party will take place at Grosvenor Casino Walsall, Bentley Mill Drive, Walsall (just off junction 10 of the M6).