Ryan ready to beat favourite

Ryan Hardy
Ryan Hardy
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Ecclesfield welterweight Ryan Hardy - a Sheffield Wednesday fan - says he’d love to get his hands on former Blades star turned boxer Curtis Woodhouse.

But for time being he is concentrating on protecting his six-game unbeaten record at Norwich on Saturday against Nathan Dale in an eight rounder.

Five years younger and five fights better off into a professional career, hometown lad Dale is overwhelming favourite.

Rotherham born Hardy, 27, knows he will have to take any opportunity that presents itself at the Epic Centre. “I know that I haven’t got to stop him to get the win but if the chance comes I’m going to take it” he told The Star.

“He is the best I’ve faced but after looking down his record I’m also the best he will have faced. He’s at a good gym and he’s won titles at lower weights but with me he’s going to feel what it’s like being in with a proper welterweight.”

The Owls supporter says that he had had enough of facing the same old ambitionless journeymen. His best performance to date was a points win against Blade Dale Hutchinson in a fight that meant something.

“My last fight against Matt Seawright was so frustrating and he had a point deducted for holding which says it all,” added Hardy.

“I decided then that I did not want to fight journeymen anymore so I’ve taken this fight and to be fair to them they’ve given me a long training camp and plenty of notice. I’ve realised that I can make welterweight easy so if I win then I think I’ll be able to compete in more big fights. I’d love to take on Woodhouse. Not just because I’m an Owl...but it helps!”

Hardy’s super-featherweight stablemate Qasim Hussain from Arbourthorne takes on Craig Poxton on the bill.