Unbeaten super-bantamweight prospect Brad Strand (4-0, 1KO) weighed in at 8st 12lbs today ahead of his fifth professional fight with Steven ‘Livewire’ Maguire (1-21-1), scheduled for this Friday, July 30.
The 24-year-old from Liverpool, who was a four-time national amateur champion, faces Middleton’s Maguire on a Black Flash Promotions event, titled ‘Back in Business’, at the Devonshire House Hotel in his home city.
It’s his first time moving up to six-rounds, which he claims he’s completely ready for after an extended time away waiting for a fight date, “It feels like a full year in camp, to be honest! We’ve been in the gym since I last boxed but have picked it up in training for about the last six weeks.”
In the opposite corner stands a former North West amateur champion, now 34-years-old. Maguire’s pro debut was back in 2018 and is entering into his 23rd contest off the back of a win for the first time in his entire pro career.
The home fighter, who trains with Paul Stevenson at the Everton Red Triangle gym, has already admitted to not knowing much about the ‘Livewire’, stating that he doesn’t look into his opponents too much and also added that he’s more than capable of handling a southpaw.
He then went on to explain how it feels to be a fighter on fight week, “Well, we stop training don’t we. We taper it down and rest up, but still got all this energy and want to train. Also, we’re not eating as much as before.
“I find it’s boring, to be honest, and it feels like the week just drags. Obviously, now I’ve weighed in and I’m fighting tomorrow I enjoy it because I know it’s not long to go then. Plus, I can get some food and liquid in me.”
Strand’s last fight was behind closed doors in the Stratford-based BT Sport studios on the undercard of Lyndon Arthur’s Commonwealth light-heavyweight title defence to Dec Spelman, a whole year ago on July 31, 2020.
That night, he defeated one of Britain’s best journeymen in Brett Fidoe, 40-36 on points, to kick off his TV debut in style.
Now, there will be a sell-out crowd in attendance at the Devonshire House Hotel, which will be noticeably different to his last experience in the ring.
“It won’t affect my performance in any way, but I’ll probably enjoy it more with the crowd there. The crowd can affect you in some fights but mostly you just shut them out and focus on your boxing.”
Strand is a former ABA Elites champion signed to Hall of Fame promoter Frank Warren. He hopes for at least two more fight dates this year.
“Normally, I would have been about 12-0 by now, but it’s been slow so just want to get back to normal to be as busy as possible. Hopefully, I’ll get a few dates off Frank Warren before the end of the year.”
Before that however, he plans to enjoy a few days off and has it all mapped out already, he said excitedly, “Immediately after this fight I got it all planned; I’m having a Chinese on Saturday, then a pizza on Sunday, and a few cupcakes as well! My mum owns a cupcake business, working from home, and I’ve already put my order in for a cheese and onion pie and some cupcakes!”
Despite the plans to have a few days off, Strand is adamant he’ll be back in the gym within just a few days, “Paul normally gives us a week off, but I’ll probably just have the Monday, then get back in the gym on Tuesday.”
Strand's clash with Maguire is due to be live streamed, with more details to follow shortly.
The Friday fight night event on July 30 is suitably named ‘Back in Business’, and also features Strand’s teammate Nick Ball (13-0, 6KOs) in a six-rounder at featherweight against an opponent yet to be confirmed.
Former English super-flyweight champion Marcel Braithwaite (9-3) heads back to the ring for the first time since back-to-back defeats to world title contender Jay Harris and Britain’s newest world champion Sunny Edwards, who Braithwaite knocked down during their 2019 British title clash.
Mozambique-born Merseysider Dexter Makaza (1-0), a 27-year-old light-heavyweight from Liverpool, is also in action on the night; as are debutants Leon Willings from Widnes, and Rebecca Ainscough from Liverpool.
Tickets are £50 for ringside, and £35 of outer ring seats.
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