The 2010 Commonwealth Games heavyweight silver medalist is moving 25lbs south to the light heavyweight division ahead of an assault on the pro game where he believes he can achieve “great things.”
The 26 year old Belfast man makes his debut next weekend in his home city on the ‘Homecoming’ Boxnation card at the Titanic Exhibition Centre.
It is not a half-hearten switch either, with Ward wanting to go all in for his family.
Explaining his reasoning behind entering the professional side of the game, Ward told Irish-Boxing.com that “boxing is a sport I love and I had to start earning money for my family with my son coming into the world a year ago and my step daughter who is now 11. So I started working out, every morning I got up it was all I thought about, and I honestly believe that I can achieve great things in the boxing world.”
“Me and my partner sat down after talking with MGM – who in my eyes are one of if not the top management companies at the minute and I have 100% trust in the team – and we decided to go for it.
Ward has relocated to Manchester for his training, linking up with esteemed coach Oliver Harrison. Here he shares a gym with the likes of Rocky Fielding and Martin Murray, and the Ulster man is enjoying his new surroundings
“It’s great being over in Oliver’s,” he continued. “It’s a relationship that is working very well. The sparring in the gym in and around my weight is more than I could ask for. He is a very clued-in fella and very positive to be around. I have a lot of respect for him.”
“When I first came over I was put in for a few rounds with Martin and Rocky, I was loving the chance to see where they were at and where I am at in the pro game. ”
“They are both very experienced fighters and have have been/are at the top, so it’s great to be in with them because I get to learn so much, even being around them in the gym I am learning.”
Evidenced by Anthony Ogogo at the weekend, the move from the amateurs to the pros does not always go smoothly, but it is so far so good for Ward who admits that “I haven’t found too much of a difference in the transition, possibly because at the moment I am fighting four and six rounders, but I’m really enjoying it.
“I love being back down to light heavy and already I can really feel the difference.”
“I am able to rely a lot more on my feet and my reactions with less weight on me, but I have kept 100% of my power as I have came down by working with a great strength coach Gareth Edgar. He is showing me new exercises which are very sport specific and I can see the purpose of them.”