Sheffield boxing: Ross Burkinshaw ready for ring warfare

Ross Burkinshaw, during his Commonwealth win.  Picture by Dan Westwell
Ross Burkinshaw, during his Commonwealth win. Picture by Dan Westwell
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Belgian fighter Benjamin Smoes could be forgiven for waving the white flag of surrender even before his Sheffield opponent enters the ring on Saturday night.

Ross Burkinshaw, a former soldier, says he is planning a spectacular ring entrance which would put the wind up most people.

The Beighton bamtamweight normally has a military entourage to escort him to the ring.

But the Octagon will stage a souped-up version before Burkinshaw and Smoes battle it out for the vancant WBO European title.

“It is going to be a pretty special ring entrance - there will be representatives from the Coldstream Guards and Yorkshire Regiment and a musical theme that will mean a lot to Sheffield” he said.

“It will be an electric atmosphere and then it is down to business and it will be all about getting another title” said the current Commonwealth champion.

“I have sold about £13,000 worth of tickets and everything has gone right in training; I am ready for it.

“Ryan (Rhodes, trainer) has watched him, told me what to expect, suggesting certain shots that will tag him.

“I have a really good double jab and that is going to cause him trouble.

“It seems that he is a boxer rather than a come-froward fighter like me, but whatever he brings, I’ll have too much for him. I am prepared to go toe-to-toe with him every round.”

The Sheffielder defeated Doncaster’s Jason Cunningham over 12 rounds last September. It was the first time he had gone that distance.

“I proved I can go that long and now I intend to bring the good things from that fight to this one.”

Both fighters are 28, Burkinshaw with a W13, Lost 5, Drawn 2 record.

Smoes was beaten at superflyweight by Jamie Conlan in Belfast last April and hasn’t boxed since. He was decked twice. The Belgian visitor (W9, L3 D1) has never fought beyond eight rounds.