Jason Welborn hopes to tee up a big fight in 2018 after he shakes off his ring rust this weekend in the Black Country.
Welborn (21-6) returns to the ring eight months to the day since his upset victory over Marcus Morrison in Manchester, with the 31-year-old coming up against Spanish journeyman Christian Hoskin Gomez (6-27-4) at the Imperial Banqueting Suite in Bilston on Saturday night.
“I’m looking forward to getting back out, it’s been a bit frustrating waiting around,” said Welborn. “We’d thought a big fight was coming, but it looks like that will come early next year. We’re just aiming to get out and get a good performance.”
“I’ve tried to maintain my fitness and it’s been an enjoyable camp. I wanted a bigger fight, but it’s good to be in there now and get a fight in before Christmas,” continued the West Brom-based middleweight, who trains out of MTK Birmingham under Séamus Macklin and Will Stokes.
“My trainers have said to me: ‘don’t be eager in this one’. These journeymen come to have a go, so I don’t want to get caught or get cut. I just want to show my levels and if a stoppage comes, it comes. I just have to get the win and look good doing it.”
In other action, James Beech Jr is looking forward to his first six-rounder at the Imperial Banqueting Suite in Bilston.
Walsall featherweight Beech (4-0) takes on rugged Barcelona-based Nicaraguan Elvis Guillen (9-33-4) and the 20-year-old is hoping to get some welcome rounds in after stopping Leeds’ Russ Midgley in three less than eight weeks ago.
“I’m feeling really good,” said Beech. “I’m on weight and ready to do the business. I’ve had my hardest camp to date because I boxed at the end of September and went straight from that last camp into this one.”
“Guillen went the distance against some good names, so I’m looking forward to getting in there and looking good. I’m keen to get the rounds in and I’d be happy to do the six rounds.”
“The four rounds is a bit erratic and you don’t really get a chance to enjoy it,” said Beech, who boxes out of Great Wyrley BC under trainer Peter Hickenbottom and at MTK Birmingham.
Also fighting on Saturday night, Bedford cruiserweight Conroy Downer is “buzzing” ahead of his pro debut at York Hall as he prepares to make his paid bow against Croatian journeyman Toni Bilic.
A former sparring partner of Dillian Whyte and Matt Skelton, the 26-year-old claimed three Home Counties titles and an ABA novice heavyweight title as an amateur.
Ahead of his four-rounder, the MTK Global-backed Downer said: “I’m buzzing for my debut. It’s a dream come true and something I’ve always wanted since I was a youngster really.”
“The main reason I’m doing it is to create a platform for me to help change lives because in my work I run an organisation that supports people and help people who have been written off by society. It’s showing people that if you believe in yourself and have a positive mindset, anything is possible,” continued Downer, who runs Reactiv8 the Nation with his wife.
“I haven’t looked at my opponent. I’m just trusting my team that they’re making the right moves,” said the Bedford man, who trains out of Kingsheath Gym in Northampton. I know I have what it takes to compete at a high level, this is just a stepping stone,” added the Jamaican-born cruiserweight.”