Eight months shy of his 60th birthday, cruiserweight Steve Ward is back trading punches as he aims to one day become the oldest professional boxer in the history of the sport.
The Sutton man, who has 57 bouts to his name, last fought at the end of 2014 losing an unsanctioned clash, but will make his comeback on December 12 this year in his first officially recognised bout in over 28 years.
Making his debut as an unheralded 21 year-old way back in 1977 at Cambridge Sporting Club, and winning over six rounds, Ward lost 39 times in 10 years recording 15 victories in that time. Having never fought for a meaningful belt in the paid ranks, the veteran is now eyeing the title of being the eldest pugilist ever to grace the ring.
That honour currently lies with American Saoul Mamby, who participated in a licensed contest in the Cayman Islands seven years ago at the tender age of 60 years and nine months. Mamby lost a ten round decision to Anthony Osborne on that occasion having been out of action for almost eight years.
Ward, who passed his licensing exam with flying colours and has been noted as the world’s most active boxer, meets ‘One Man Riot’ Jody Meikle at Kissinggate Leisure Centre in Derbyshire next month and will regain that coveted title on the night. However, Ward would need to fight on for a further year in order to top Mamby’s overall record and become the oldest boxer of all time in the record books.
Opponent Meikle can count losses against the likes of Frank Buglioni, Miles Shinkwin, Tony Dodson and Luke Blackledge on his four-year list of 56 losses from 69 bouts, but may fancy his chances against a man 24 years his senior.