aWARDed WORLD TITLE ELIMINATOR IN KANSAS
Friday 1st February 2019
Unbeaten British super-bantamweight champion Thomas Patrick Ward (25-0) makes his long overdue U.S. debut against Hispanic fighter Jesse Hernandez on February 15.
The Star Arena in Mulvane will be host to another marquee doubleheader of championship boxing with Ward making a significant leap to world level, while two unbeaten super-lightweight prospects in Shohjahon Ergashev (15-0) and Mykal Fox (19-0) put their unblemished records on the line.
Ward has gone the traditional route since winning his Lord Lonsdale belt and making one successful defence, opting for a tough IBF European challenge against Alvaro Rodriguez, to solidify his position as the #4 ranked contender with the WBO.
The current title holder, Emmanuel Navarette, is certainly on Ward's radar for future title aspirations at the elite level and with an impressive display across the shores, would cement him in the mandatory spot for a potential shot at the back end of the year.
Priding himself on pure artful boxing skill, good judgement of distance and balance, Ward will be a tricky customer for any of the breakthrough fighters in the 122lb division and has yet to produce his very best.
Although Ward is not a concussive puncher, as his record suggests, his vast pedigree in the amateurs has equipped him with the ring intelligence and adaptability for any opponent.
Jazza Dickens was considered a big step up for the Durham fighter but passing that acid test at the domestic scene, followed by a comprehensive, mature shutout of Sean Davis who came forward relentlessly only to be picked off by Ward on the backfoot, shows the level to which he's operated at and the best is yet to come.
Exclusive to Showbox across the States, Ward won't realise his American Dream until he is crowned the best in the world and make this a regularity with huge unifications and groundbreaking deals out there.
One of the flag-bearers for North East boxing after Lewis Ritson fell at the European hurdle against Patera, the 24-year-old could break away from the fringes of world level and look ahead to some big fights and be known as a household name, not just in the U.K. but the U.S. also.
A few years back, brother Martin Ward came up short when he challenged Stuart Hall for the world title, and the youngest of five brothers will be looking to go one step further and have his name written in the history books.