Former Repton ace Bobby Ward extends unbeaten pro record
Former Repton star Bobby Ward was forced to climb off the canvas to maintain his undefeated professional record in Watford
By LEN WHALEY
Former Repton star Bobby Ward was forced to climb off the canvas to maintain his undefeated professional record on Saturday night.
Ward, who defeated Amir Khan during a stellar amateur career with the Bethnal Green club, survived an early scare to collect his third pro win with a points success over Mariusz Bak at the Watford Colosseum.
The 22-year-old, who had earned a win and a draw in his previous two outings, appeared to have turned his back on the sport when he took a five-year break from boxing.
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But Ward returned to the ring this year after watching his brothers Martin and John enjoy successful amateur careers of their own.
He said: "We're a big boxing family and my brothers have been doing exceptionally well.
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"Martin's only just turned 18 and he won gold at the European Youth Championships in Poland last month. He's targeting the London Olympics and I think he can go all the way.
"John is doing really well too, so seeing them come up through the ranks really got me hungry for the sport again. I didn't see any point in going back to the amateurs so I decided to turn pro and I'm really enjoying it."
The super-featherweight, who is trained by Tony Sims at his Hainault gym, built up an early lead against his taller southpaw rival on Saturday, moving inside to score with solid hooks to the head and body.
He again looked in control in the third round, before walking into a powerful right that put him on the floor for an eight count.
Ward climbed up to score well in the fourth round and he took a 38-37 points verdict from referee Jeff Hinds.
There was a title success for Ward's stable-mate Lee Purdy, who claimed the Southern Area crown with a 98-94 revenge win over Bermondsey's Peter McDonagh, who had inflicted his lone defeat in 10 contests.
The Prizefighter eight-man, one-night knockout tournament on Friday, October 2, has been switched from York Hall to the ExCeL in Docklands, because of heavy ticket demand.
Fight fans have been attracted by the strong line-up of big men, including Audley Harrison and Danny Williams with the Matchroom-promoted event also due to be broadcast on SkySports.