‘The Rock’ doesn’t feel he has to roll back the years as he rematches Craig Evans [19(3)-2(1)-2] in Cardiff tonight, claiming he is a better fighter now than he ever was.
Some Irish fight fans did bemoan the fact Stephen Ormond [25(13)-5(1)] didn’t get the opportunities his talent deserved before passing 30 and now watch on lamenting that fact, rather than getting overly excited when significant fights come around.
However, the 36-year-old assures age isn’t a factor as he fights 29-year-old Evans for the WBO European lightweight rankings title in Wales tonight.
Indeed, if anything, the Clondalkin fighter believes the age surplus may play out in his favour in what is a must-win rematch.
Ormond believes he is not just older, but wiser and predicts if he can stick to the game plan laid out he will emerge victorious.
“My hunger is still there. I love the game. I have been saying since I hit 30 ‘I better hurry up and do something and I better do this and that’, but you know what I don’t care about age anymore. I think I am getting better now. I am settling down on shots more, I am thinking more and I have more experience. If I get the game plan right I believe I can get the win,” explained Ormond.
The first Evans instalment, which played out in Belfast in 2017, possibly represents one of ‘The Rock’s’ worst performances. It was certainly the scrappiest and as a result dullest fight he was involved in – with the Welshman taking over midway through and dropping Ormond twice in the final round.
He claims he has learnt his lessons from that ill fated fight and is ready to amend things at the Vale Sports Arena.
“Patience, slow it down and don’t rush it. I really feel that’s the key to winning this fight.”
“I have to have patience and I finally learned that after all my years in boxing” he laughed.
“The last time we fought I just didn’t perform. It was just a very draining fight and it turned into more of a wrestling match. It was awful to watch. But I’ve learned a lot from that and that experience of having fought him will help me” he added.
Watch IFL TV’s weigh in video below: