Headline NewsLatestNewsPro News

‘I’m Up There – Joe Ward waiting for opportunity to knock

Joe Ward says he is world-level and just needs the chance to prove it.

The multi-time World and European medal winner has been expressing a desire to level up for the last year and hasn’t been shy about stating he is ready for any of the big names.

However, the 30-year-old natural talent is aware his resume and reputation make securing those fights that little bit harder, so says he’ll set about forcing the elite fighter’s hand.

The West Meath man gets a chance to impress in the spotlight when he fights veteran Derrick Webster in Madison Square Garden’s Theater tomorrow night – and hopes a good display will help his big fight chances.

“I don’t think I’m very far away,” said Ward when asked where he is in terms of the best at light heavyweight. “I believe I’m up there, it’s just about getting the right opportunities at the right time. I’m just waiting for the big opportunities and I’m hoping 2024 can bring them. After a good performance against Derrick Webster on March 15, I’m open to any of the top guys.”

Speaking on Webster who he faces on 360 Promotions Callum Walsh topped UFC Fight Pass broadcast bill, he added: “I hope he brings the best of him to put on a show, but there’s only one outcome. I’m going to take care of business in whatever fashion I want to.”

Some argue Ward has the ability to be dropped in at the deep end and could upset a name right now. Indeed, those same people would suggest at 30, that should be the route taken. However, respected coach Joey Gamache, who works closely alongside Jimmy Payne in guiding Ward, argues there is a process that has to be followed regardless of natural talent.

“It takes three years to make a champion and ten seconds to end one. The point of it is, even though he’s an Olympian, you can’t just throw him in there with anyone. You gotta keep developing him. He’s now at the stage where things are gonna step up but he’ll be ready,” said Gamache.


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years