Heavyweight Thomas Hardwick (2-0, 2 KOs) will fight Jamell Williams (0-3, 3 KOs) at the Cordon Bleu in Woodhaven, Queens this Friday night in a fight scheduled for four rounds.
Hardwick was last in action against Rodelle Bolar in Atlantic City on July 16, and he is looking forward to getting back in the ring. Fellow heavyweight Derric Rossy has been added to team Hardwick to act as an assistant to trainer Grant Seligson, and Hardwick is happy with how the three of them have worked together.
“He (Rossy) is a second to Grant and he has brought another dimension to the training,” Hardwick told the Irish Voice on Sunday evening.
“They are both relaxed and scientific trainers and they are bringing on my boxing a lot. I hope to show it more on Friday night," he added.
Hardwick went on to say that in winning the Golden Gloves novice heavyweight title last year, and in both his professional fights this year, he has tried to force things too much.
The Dubliner acknowledges that he relied on heart, effort and adrenaline to succeed, and that he now needs to be more disciplined in the ring.
“I am taking a step back and I am trying to use each shot a bit better. I am trying to be more specific as to where I am punching and as to the way I am trying to break things down,” he said.
Should Hardwick emerge from the fight unscathed and victorious this weekend, he could be set for a very busy end-of-year program.
First up will be a debut appearance at the WaMu Theater in Madison Square Garden on October 22 on the undercard of WBC/WBO bantamweight champion Nonito Donaire's defense against Omar Narvaez, when he is tentatively scheduled for another four round contest.
Hardwick then confirmed to the Irish Voice that his team is working on trying to get him on the undercard of the Miguel Cotto/Antonio Margarito rematch on December 3 at the main arena at MSG, which would be another opportunity for huge exposure for the 26-year-old.
If Hardwick needed any inspiration ahead of Friday’s fight, then his native Dublin certainly provided him with some when they won the All-Ireland football final by defeating Kerry on Sunday. For Hardwick, there is a personal connection.
“I am absolutely delighted with the win," he said. "I was playing with Pat Gilroy (Dublin manager) when I was 17 with St. Vincent’s.”
Hardwick also played with full forward Ger Brennan and Dublin squad members Dermot Connolly, Paul Conlon and Mossy Quinn.
Another source of motivation for Hardwick will be the visit of his brother James to see him in action in Queens.
Hardwick also had a recent visit from Bobby Gunn, and the two shared a light workout together as they traded tips on campaigning in the squared circle. The former cruiserweight contender recently fought and won a bare knuckle-fight title fight to become world bare-knuckle boxing heavyweight champion.
For ticket information for Friday’s fight, contact Old World Boxing at 718-765-1860.
In other news, Tyson Fury (16-0,11kos) and Willie Casey both recorded wins in Belfast on Saturday night in their respective bouts.
Heavyweight Fury defeated Nicolai Firtha (20-8-1) by TKO in the fifth round, while bantamweight Willie Casey (12-1, 8 KOs) stopped Daniel Kodjo Sassou (30-18-4) in the eighth round of their fight.
Finally, middleweight Andy Lee (26-1, 19 KOs) was in New York on a flying visit to meet the press at the Red Lion on Bleecker Street last Wednesday.
Looking fit and relaxed, he told the Irish Voice that preparations were going well and he was looking forward to his fight with Bryan Vera (19-5, 12 KOs) on October 1 at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Check out next week’s issue for an extensive preview of the rematch. Tickets for Lee/Vera II are available at Ticketmaster.