John Ryder is back in the ring next month
A hand injury has kept him out of the ring since April – and the 25 year-old from Islington is back in a six-rounder at the Camden Centre on Saturday, July 19.
Ryder is targeting the mandatory challenger’s position for the British title having given Billy-Joe Saunders his hardest test in a British and Commonwealth-title challenge last September.
Saunders himself admitted: “He pushed me to the wire” and the scorecards showed the former Olympian hung onto his belt by just one and two-round margins.
Ryder said: “I know I can beat him. I know what I did wrong. I took too many rounds off in the middle rounds. I was trying to save myself for the later rounds.
“I don’t think he landed a shot in the last round and I wish I had boxed like that throughout the whole fight rather than worrying about how much I had left in the tank.
“I’m in boxing for the big fights, but I can’t see us fighting again anytime soon.
“Billy Joe is on his path and I’m rebuilding.
“I do kick myself. I could be the British and Commonwealth champion, but I’m going to take the positives from it and remember that I learned a lot.
“I want that British title and I’ve just got to get myself into the mandatory position again.”
At present, Nick Blackwell is the mandatory challenger, but Saunders has already beaten him and moves on to European title level next month.
Ryder said: “I know Billy-Joe wants to win the Lonsdale belt outright, but if he wins the European title, will he want to come back down to British level? Blackwell’s a good fighter as well, so I’m not sure that makes a lot of sense.”
Ryder is back in contention following a nine-round stoppage of Jez Wilson in a British-title eliminator in April.
He injured his left hand in the fourth round – and that’s kept him out until now.
Ryder admits he wasn’t happy with his performance against Wilson at the York Hall.
“After four rounds I thought he was ready to go,” said Ryder, “but I lost my concentration and got caught by a few silly shots. I know I have to work on my mindset. I can’t switch off in fights.”
The adjustments Ryder is making are being overseen by Tony Sims.
“No two days are the same,” he said. “It’s enjoyable to train there. We have a laugh, but when it comes to hard work, nobody does it like we do.”
Tickets for the show are available from 07973-415224.