Upton Barks: Belfast calling
PUBLISHED: 18:00 02 March 2017
Boxer Anto Upton gives his thoughts in his weekly column
It’s fight week for me, I’m flying over to Northern Ireland today (Thursday) to fight in my 15th professional contest against heavy-handed Latvian Zaurs Sadihovs (4-14).
It’ll be my first fight since July last year this Friday night at the Devenish Complex in Belfast.
The training camp has all gone well. I finished off sparring a week ago and all my spars during camp went well because I had top class lads in the gym with me.
I’ve been working with my strength and conditioning coach Liam Price so I’m feeling strong and fit.
It’s been seven months now since my last fight and someone asked me just the other day about how the time out has been, whether it’s made me frustrated or angry, but it’s just flown by, to be honest.
During that time, I’ve relocated back to Essex and have been getting used to my new surroundings and new team.
I’m now at the West Ham Gym with top trainer Barry Smith and retired boxer Tommy Martin. We have been gelling well and I’m looking forward to having them in the corner for the first time.
Tommy and I were sparring partners when he first turned pro so it’ll be good to have him in the corner with me for this fight.
My brother Paul has fought my opponent before and beat him on points, I but haven’t spoken to him about it or looked him or anything like that.
My brothers will in my dressing room on the night and they’ll all be giving me advice and little tips about what I should do. Obviously, I listen to my trainers foremost, but you will not find a closer bond between any other brothers, we are always there together.
When you fight, you hear your trainer more than anyone else, and the roar of the crowd becomes a blur, but I can still pick my brothers’ voices out from the crowd when I’m in that ring.
I left the ticket sales to a friend of mine to sort out. I got given 100 and hopefully they’re all gone, but whatever number is there in the crowd that night, they’ll be loud anyway.
My boy Kyle will be there, he’s in the crowd for every one of my fights.
Thanks to all my support, as always, and thank you to all the readers for following my columns.
For tickets to the show, please contact 07951 318 081
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Anto would like to thank his sponsors The Meat Man, Warm Front Ltd, Muscle Doctor, Tully Tyres, his management team MTK and agent Tim Rickson