British middleweight Anthony Ogogo is focused solely on getting back to full fitness following surgery to repair his troublesome achilles tendons in September of this year.
The Lowestoft native, who turns 26 next month, has been out of action since a July stoppage win over Wayne Reed at Liverpool’s Echo Arena, but has already written off the remainder of 2014.
“It’s a long old process which isn’t particularly enjoyable,” Ogogo exclusively told World Boxing News.
“On the plus side it’s enabled me to assess other aspects of my physique and performance so when I am back in the ring, there’s no doubt that physically and mentally I’ll be in the best condition. Once I get to that point there’ll be no stopping me.
“At the Olympics I was hampered with the achilles, plus a bad shoulder that I had to rehab for four months prior when it should have taken a year.
“Mentally my head was all over the place as my Mum was fighting for her life in hospital (which she won and has made an amazing recovery). But with all my pro fights it’s been a case of ‘getting through’ the camp and the fight, rather than pushing myself.
“I was looking forward to the week after my fight which I could have off not stressing the achilles, which to me was a luxury, but then the following week getting back into training was torture. It was a vicious and painful circle.
“I’ve had to stop sparring in the past after three or four rounds as it was too sore, when really I should have sparred ten or twelve. When I did do the ten rounds of sparring it was a case of protecting my achilles and neglecting the actual boxing technique that I should have been working on.”
Whilst nursing the ailment, Ogogo raced to 7-0 with four on the back of inking with top US promoters Golden Boy in January 2013, having been part of the outstanding Team GB squad at London 2012.
Picking up a medal alongside the likes of Anthony Joshua and Luke Campbell was a dream come true for the likeable prospect, who has nothing but admiration his former team-mates despite having to watch on from the sidelines as both push on in their respective careers.
“It has been a little frustrating to see Anthony and Luke doing so well, but they are my pals so I wish them luck. My career is my career and I’ll always do what is best for me,” he said.
“I’ll always cheer on my friends that I’ve travelled the world with and spent a awful lot of time with, but I’m expecting to box for another ten years so in the grand scheme of things four or five months out of a ten-year career is nothing.
“Not that I’m wishing any bad luck on anyone, but there’ll be times when others are injured and I’ll be flying. It’s harder when you can do something you love as your love for that thing intensifies, so I’m literally chomping at the bit to get stuck back in.”
On the subject of being given a date by legendary promoter Oscar De La Hoya for his ring return, Ogogo was tentative in stating: “It’s hard to say, the best answer is when I’m ready. Four years, I’ve been hampered for four years with this Achilles injury, with the last two and a half being almost unbearable.
“But in answer to the question, I’m realistically looking at February. If I could fight before that then great, but I think February is the month where I’ll be back in the ring – and hopefully straight into a meaningful fight.
“What I do know is when I am back I’ll be back better than ever,” promised Ogogo.
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