Ricky Summers expects his performance to be far more entertaining when he rounds out 2019 with a ring return next month.
Summers has endured a frustrating year on the national stage, as a major domestic prize continues to elude him.
But ‘Digger’ remains determined to reach the top, ahead of his next outing which will be the 20th bout of a seven-year pro career.
He next features on BCB Promotions’ offering in the Stadium Suite at the Banks’s Stadium, Walsall Football Club, on Saturday December 7. The bill is titled ‘Battle at the Banks’s.’
The 32-year-old light heavyweight will be targeting a 17th paid victory, with five TKOs previously recorded, and there are still just two defeats on his pro ledger.
His ‘0’ was relinquished when he challenged for the British crown in 2017, where he was valiantly outpointed by then-champion Frank Buglioni.
The opportunity to become the top contender for those honours again came in February, with Summers taking on Andre Sterling in a final eliminator.
Summers was on top early on and scored a knockdown, but a nasty gash by his eye curtailed his progress. Sterling overturned the deficit and prevailed over-the-distance.
Another 10-round British title eliminator came in October against the unbeaten Lawrence Osueke, with a scrappy affair ending all square.
A split decision draw was recorded, a 95-95 verdict ensuring a stalemate with another judge scoring it 96-95 to Summers. The other inexplicably had it 100-92 to Osueke.
Summers, who is from Tipton but now lives in Wombourne, Wolverhampton, feels he would have beaten both men had he been on top form.
He said: “It wasn’t the best of camps for me, it was relatively short notice so I only had five weeks to get ready and I had a few niggling injuries in the run-up.
“I was expecting an opponent who was skilful and effective, but he looked scared to me. He didn’t want to exchange and just kept on holding.
“It was boring to watch. I never had any tickets for the show, because it was sold out, and I’m glad I didn’t. I wouldn’t want my fans paying their hard-earned money to see that.
“It wasn’t my fault, I was the one putting on pressure and coming forward. If I was Lawrence, I’d have come to fight but he didn’t do that.
“He was very negative, I didn’t perform to my best against him or Andre Sterling, but I’m up there with the best on my day.
“It was close, I thought I nicked a lot of the early rounds, so I was disappointed with the result. I’ve never drawn before, but he didn’t beat me either so I upset the apple cart.
“Eddie (Hearn, promoter) came up to me after and we had a little talk about it. He knows I came to have a go but, in my opinion, Lawrence didn’t really want to know.
“I’d love the rematch, but I’d want it on my terms. If he’ll come to Birmingham or Wolverhampton, let’s do it, but I’m not sure if he’d be up for that.
“I’m moving on and want to keep pushing for what I’ve always been about, big fights and titles. I still feel good about the future.
“I know I can’t keep having month after month of inactivity and expect to stay sharp, so I’m glad to be getting out before the end of the year.
“It can be disheartening to be training when you haven’t got a date, but I’ve got something to work towards and that’s getting another win.
“I’ll be looking to put on a good show. I haven’t got that many knockouts on my record, but I know I can be punch and the skills have always been there.
“After that, I imagine there’s someone out there in the top 20 at light heavy who will see me as a scalp, but I’m no-one’s stepping stone. Late February or early March and I’ll go again.”
The main event at Walsall FC will see the vacant Midlands featherweight title contested, over 10 rounds, between James Beech Jr and Luke Jones.
Unbeaten Beech, from Bloxwich, is on a quest to become a two-weight area champion with his 12th straight pro win, after 11 victories from 11 pro fights with two TKOs.
Beech, a second generation boxer as the son of local favourite Jimmy Beech is a graduate of Pleck Boxing Club, who he represented 80 times with 50 wins.
Jones, of Chasetown in Staffordshire, has two losses but has also recorded six successes from his nine pro outings, all on points.
He’s completed the duration on all but one occasion, with a technical draw against Alec Bazza ending after one round, as both men were badly cut by a clash of heads.
Hot prospect Liam Davies leads the way on the under-card, with another significant contest expected after an impressive impact last time out.
His bout with Jose Aguilar was scheduled for six, but was over in the fourth when Davies kept up his undefeated streak with a second TKO as a pro.
Davies had previously taken out Pablo Narvaez in two as part of his five wins from five outings, with all three of his other opponents visiting the floor but seeing the final bell.
Edward Bjorklund, Stefan Slavchev and Khvicha Gigolashvili climbed off the canvas and clung on against Davies, who has yet to drop even a round.
The 23-year-old super bantamweight, who hails from Donnington in Telford, comes from good stock after a stellar amateur career, where he racked up exactly 100 contests.
He recorded 78 wins and represented England at youth level, becoming a 2010 Schoolboys champion in the process.
Another second generation fighter, he’s the son of ex-pro Tristan Davies and represented his father’s Donnington Boxing Club in the unpaid ranks.
Troi Coleman, from Burntwood in Staffordshire, is also 5-0 as a super middleweight having reeled off a series of points victories since switching sports from kickboxing.
‘The Hawk,’ who still trains out of the Platinum gym in his hometown, has seen off Lewis van Poetsch, Darryl Sharp, Kevin McCauley, Scott Hillman and Owen Jobburn so far.
Cole Johnson, of Stoke-on-Trent, seeks his fifth paid success, after recording four points victories starting with his debut last year.
The lightweight hopeful hasn’t conceded a round so far as a pro and has a good grounding, having previously become a national titleist himself as an amateur.
Johnson claimed England Senior Development honours in 2017, representing Orme Boxing Club, and wants to build a path towards further accolades.
Southpaw Lauren Johnson, from nearby Willenhall, will lace on the gloves for the first time in nearly 18 months and is going up a weight to super welter.
‘The Black Widow’ returns after claiming the eight-round British Challenge strap in her previous outing, by making it a hat-trick of paid points results.
Dudley’s Ruben Campbell has been laid-low with flu so no longer features.
The show will start at 6pm and end by 9pm, where screens will then be used at the venue to broadcast the world title fight between Anthony Joshua and Andy Ruiz Jr.
Joshua attempts to regain his WBA ‘super,’ WBO, IBF and IBO belts from Ruiz in Saudi Arabia, who are three hours ahead of UK time.
Tickets for the bill in the Stadium Suite are on sale now, which are priced at £35 standard or £65 VIP with a hot fork buffet.
They are available by calling the BCB Box Office on 07493 582 261. It will be £40 for entry on the door.