Kelcie Ball heads up to middleweight for May 11 return
Kelcie Ball will do whatever it takes to become a force in the middleweight division after leaving the super welter ranks behind.
Ball boxes under the BCB Promotions banner for the first time since joining their stable, after unsuccessfully challenging for the Midlands title.
He features when paid pugilism is back at Walsall Town Hall on Saturday May 11, on the BCB offering titled ‘Showtime.’
The 27-year-old will campaign at 160lbs, with super welter proving a step too far in his previous outing against area champion Ryan Kelly last September.
Kelly lived up to his ‘Ruthless’ nickname by forcing the stoppage after just 89 seconds, with Ball taking a months-long hiatus afterwards.
He now returns looking to forge a new path to glory, with Tyler Denny the Midlands titleist at middleweight although he could yet relinquish the belt.
The unbeaten Nathan Heaney, from Stoke-on-Trent, has voiced his intention to challenge for the crown, so ready-made contenders are starting to come forward.
They are all under BCB’s stewardship and Ball is happy for his name to be tossed into the mix, but hasn’t stopped thinking there.
‘Cannon’ Ball, from Dordon in Warwickshire, first looks to improve his pro record after registering nine wins, with two TKOs, before losing his ‘0.’
He said: “In all honesty, I needed a break from boxing and I’ve had that. I’d been fairly active for nearly three years since I’d turned pro, so some time out was needed.
“I’ve been back in the gym for a while and I’m still with the same coach, Shaun Cogan, but I’ve joined up with BCB now.
“It was something I was looking to do before the Kelly fight, to tell you the truth, but it’s happened now and I can get on with my career.
“I’m looking forward to appearing at new venues, I’ve only really boxed in and around Birmingham, so Walsall will be a nice change!
“I just want to knock off the ring rust, get back to winning ways and then I’ll go for whatever comes up, whether it’s home or away.
“I’ve been a decent ticket seller, so the opportunity to go on the road hasn’t come up all that often. I just want to be in meaningful fights.
“I need to be ready, if I get a chance, and May 11 allows me to do that. I’ll keep ticking over, after that, and see what happens.
“I actually had a phone call from Matchroom, two weeks before I signed with BCB, asking if I could make middleweight at short notice, but I couldn’t do it.
“That taught me a bit of a lesson that I should always be in shape, but I’m back now and I’m here to stay. I’ve made it clear to my team that I’m not scared of anybody.
“I’ve still only got the one defeat on my record and making super welter the last time killed me. Getting off the last half a stone was absolute hell.
“It was a good shot from Kelly, it was only the first round but it was over from there. Everything just got the better of me.
“I’d sparred with him more times than I care to remember and not been hurt once, so it was obvious that something was wrong.
“That’s in the past now, I can’t do super welter again and maybe I can even go for the Midlands title again at middleweight.
“Tyler is the champion, but no one is really sure whether he’s going to defend it. I’ve seen on social media that Heaney wants a shot, but so do I.
“If it does become vacant, I’m happy to go up to Stoke and take Heaney on in his backyard. I’ll even fight Tyler if he wants to. It’s fine by me.”
Ricky Summers, with new trainer Spencer McCracken in his corner for the first time, features elsewhere on the Town Hall card.
Summers, from Tipton but now a resident of Wombourne in Wolverhampton, has challenged for the British light heavyweight title and wants another opportunity.
A reigning area champion, James Beech Jr, keeps busy with the super featherweight crown in the bag. The unbeaten hometown hero hails from nearby Bloxwich.
Beech enjoyed his finest hour at the same venue in December, defeating Louis Fielding by ninth round knockout to claim the vacant strap.
Tommy Loach, from West Bromwich, will back in the ring after a year out through injury and still has his own undefeated record to protect.
Loach drew his last outing with MJ Hall, after recording back-to-back TKOs on the heels of a points victory on his debut.
Liam Davies, from Donnington in Telford, is another hopeful making his way as a pro after success in the unpaid ranks.
The super bantamweight, 23, has already secured two points results in his favour, having only turned over late last year.
The son of former Midlands champion Tristan Davies racked up 100 amateur contests for his father’s Donnington Boxing Club and boxed for England.
Two debutants, Amy Timlin and Ruben Campbell, complete the line-up. Timlin travels from Southam in Warwickshire to turn over.
Teenager Timlin, who is just 19, switched sports from kickboxing, where she won a host of titles, and will become a part of the featherweight division.
Second generation fighter Campbell, from Dudley, will join the same super lightweight ranks where dad Ray ‘Raza’ Campbell featured himself in the early 1990s.
Tickets, priced at £35 standard or £65 VIP ringside with a buffet and waitress service, are on sale now from the Town Hall Box Office on 0845 111 2900. It’s £40 for entry on the door.