With the days looming to Luke Heron’s bout with Kieron Gray on Black Country Boxing’s ‘High Stakes’ show at Walsall Town Hall this weekend, the Birmingham based boxer is remaining focused on the task ahead, writes Jake Jones.
The middleweight fighter has a clear focus on the importance of mental strength in and out of the ring while perfecting his personal style as he is getting back into the rhythm of boxing.
Despite being nine months into the calendar, this is only Heron’s second fight of the year after seven months without a competitive bout as he adapted to a new job in the New Year.
“I just want to get in the ring now to be honest.” Heron said about the September 24th fight.
“It’s just another day for me now, I’ll make this weight nice and easy and I just want to get in there and do the job and I guarantee that I’ll be walking away with the win.
“But I’ve got to remember that I’ve got to keep going and there is more to do.
“Back in my amateur days I got a bit lost in my style. When I first started I used to move, or ‘run’ a lot, as people say.
“As I’ve started getting more and more into my boxing game, I started watching a lot of the Mexicans, the likes of Canelo, De la Hoya and Marquez.
“I started to like their style where you put pressure on them and take their shots and put them onto the back foot.
“But saying that I’m a well-rounded fighter and I use my mind a lot in the ring where I can switch up to another game plan and I can put myself on the back foot if needs be.
“But I’m not too concerned about Gray and what he is going to do. I just want to focus on my game and focus on the victory.”
Heron’s selection of styles was showcased in his last bout. In the points victory over Dan Blackwell – the brother of retired boxer Nick – in July, Heron had to switch it up to ensure the victory.
“That fight also became a bit of a brawl. The first two rounds I boxed well but then I got drawn into it a bit and started scrapping and brawling.
“I gave a variety of shots, I didn’t throw the same shots over and over again. I switched up my combinations going from head to body and body to head.
“I think that’s what made me win the fight.”
It was an impressive showing from Heron considering the previous bout before the Blackwell victory was in December 2015.
But now the 23 year old wants to keep moving forward in the professional boxing world with the next hurdle coming at Walsall Town Hall.
“That break did give me more motivation to get back on it because when I’m not training, I’m itching to be training. I’m always thinking about boxing.
“I’ve just got to keep learning. This is a new trade for me in the professional game in terms of maintaining weight and staying on it.
“Before, I used to set my mind as the goal is the next fight but that’s not the goal. The goal is the belts at the end of the path. These upcoming fights are just barriers I’ve got to get past.
“I’m definitely prepared and I know that I’ve got the tools that I need to be successful in this trade.
“I know that I am better than these journeymen. At the moment I know that I am going to be getting these kinds of fighters.
“I know I should be walking through them and if don’t walk through them then I shouldn’t be in this trade.
Tickets are priced at £30 (general admission) and £60 (VIP Ringside), and can be purchased by calling 0845 111 2900 or directly from any boxer on the bill.