Positive Ray Moylette ready to take a second bite of the boxing cherry after pandemic leveler

Ray Moylette [11(4)-1(0)] has somehow managed to find positives galore from a global pandemic.

Unbeknownst to himself and in more in-depth fashion, the Mayo star virtually quoted the Chinese proverb ‘a crisis is an opportunity riding a dangerous wind,’ when discussing what appeared on the surface to be nightmare 12 months.

Moylette does admit there were low points and even a rock bottom moment of sorts but upon reflection feels Covid was good for his career and elements of it were positive for him personally.

Career-wise ‘Sugar Ray’ argues the pandemic and its effect on boxing has proved a leveler for him.

The Pascal Collins trained fighter fell behind in 2019, a year in which he didn’t fight, but now argues with 2020 a non-runner for a host in his field, they all start 2021 in the same position.

Moylette, who returns in Belgium on March 20, argues, like him, a lot of fighters will now need some ring rust freeing action before looking for more noteworthy action.

Indeed the European amateur medal winner believes he is better of now than he was this stage 12 months ago.

“The more I think about the time I’ve missed I think I’m in a better position now than I was in last March,” an extremely upbeat Moylette told Irish-boxing.com.

“I’ve been thinking about it and the way I see it is, I was nonactive for 2019 due to issues beyond my control, in the bigger scheme of things I was on the sideline and everyone else was moving on with their careers.

“Now everyone is on the sideline and we are all jumping back in together. Now it’s who can get to top speed quickest from a standing start. Covid 19 has leveled the playing field for me,” he adds before revealing he’s confident he can make as much of an impact as any similar level operators once he hits the ground running.

“One year or two years without action is pretty much the same thing. That’s the way I see it. It’s up to me to hit the ground running and finally get this rebuild out of the way.”

In keeping with the positive theme Moylette also believes the break may have done his body good.

“I feel invincible,” he continues.

“I’m back training full time, working and enjoying everything I do. Maybe the year out was a Godsend. I’ve been a full-time boxer since 2008 if you include my time in The National High Performance Unit and my life outside of boxing was suffering. I have all the ducks lined up again and ready to jump back into the world I feel most at home in, the boxing world.”

While the World Youth and European Championship medalist argued he returns to a level playing field career-wise, he suggests he has done all he can to give himself an advantage in terms of fitness and sharpness.

“I knew if I stuck with it, the chance to fight would come again. Imagine if I took the foot off the gas and waited for things to get back to normal?

“I would be in a world of hurt knowing the chance came and I missed it. Thankfully I’m in a great position to avail of a second bite at the cherry,” he adds before revealing quality sparring has him in good shape.

“I’m happy enough to start again, in reality, that’s what I’m doing. One or two warm-up fights to get my eye in and then I can start hunting. Yeah fair enough I’ve not had a fight since December 2018, but you haven’t seen the wars in Celtic Warrior Gym over the last two years. Myself, James Tennyson, Niall O Connor and Jesus Alver have been taking no prisoners in our sparring sessions.

“If Packie Collins set up a PPV stream to our sparring sessions, none of us would have to fight a day again in our lives. We would have our money made with all that action.”

While it’s all positive for a fighter who fights in Belgium in just over a week’s time, Moylette does admit he is relieved to finally have a date to look forward to.

“Relief is the first thing that comes to mind,” he said when asked about the fight date.

“I’m delighted to have a date for my return. It’s been a long two year wait but thankfully I had plenty of support around me so it was easy to keep the head down.”

Expanding the new father adds: “I’ve been pretty busy since the start of lockdown in March 2020. Colby-Ray came along two months into lockdown and changed everything. It’s very easy to forget about the little things in life but seeing him grow and learn over the last 9 months has been an amazing journey in itself.”

When comes to expanding on what the year may hold, Moylette prefered to stay quiet, ensuring all the focus is on his first fight since December 2018.

“We have a plan for the next few months but I’m not in a position to disclose it yet. We’ve had lots of potential fights and opportunities but the uncertainty of everything at the minute makes it very hard to plan. My main objective now is to get the win in Belgium. I have the rest left in Packie Collins hands.”

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: editoririshboxing@gmail.com