If Perlogea is ‘The Bull’ then I am the ‘Mansfield Matador’ says Mansfield record-breaker Steve Ward
The 'Mansfield Matador' is getting ready to tame 'The Bull' as Steve Ward trains hard for his record-breaking world title fight with Adrian Parlogea on Friday, 6th August.
Ward, is aiming to end his career with a world title in front of his home crowd just six days before he is forced to retire at the age of 65 when he fights the Romanian - 15 years his junior - for the inaugural World Legends Boxing World Cruiserweight Championship at Mansfield Rugby Club.
“This guy apparently is called Adrian 'The Bull' Parlogea and I have been told he is saying he is a bull and he is going to come for me,” smiled Ward.
“They asked me do you have anything to say about that and I said, yes, tell him I'm the 'Mansfield Matador'!
“I don't trash talk and let it distract me.”
Ward will again enter the Guinness Book of Records as the world's oldest boxer at 64 years and 359 days and is having to slim down from his usual heavyweight for the fight, but said: “Things are going great and I am feeling brilliant.
“I am really up for this fight and I have never felt so fit and strong. This guy is going to wonder what's hit him.
“I am going to train until four days before the fight. I won't cut is off gradually. I will kill it straight off.
“To have the right amount of rest is as good as having the right amount of training.
“You have got to play it properly and I don't want to leave it all in the gym. A lot of people do that. They wonder what's wrong with them.
“They say I've done all this training and I can't understand why I'm not fit. I can – they've left it in the gym.
“That is not happening with me as I am doing it just right. I am feeling good and I am keeping it that.”
Ward has been slogging through the heat wave over the last week and said: “It's been hard but you have just got to get out there and do it.
“I have had all the bags on, all the rubbers belts, all the tracksuits, the all-weather suit – and I have done it. I have kept it going every day. I have not missed.”
He admitted being 64 made everything tougher.
“It is harder,” he said. “The knocks you take in sparring that used to be all right by the afternoon, if you got one now in the morning it takes four or five days before they stop aching.
“You got a little bump or bang in the past and you'd laugh at it. Now you are a bit stiffer with being older.
“But you get wiser with age and that's a good thing.
“I wish I'd been this wise when I was 20. You learn to miss the punches and not just go ploughing through them. You get smarter in your ways.
“I have been doing quite a bit sparring. I just want to get my timing back together. It's all been really good – no hiccups. The shoulder (past injury) is feeling really powerful.”Tickets are selling well for Ward's big fight.
“I've been told there are only about 10 ringside left,” he said.
“But the standard ones for me are as good as the ringside as you have a clear view.
“If I go to see a fight I don't care if I am a couple of rows back. As long as I can still see it I am happy.”Ward will be delighted to win this title for Mansfield.
“I like to pay back how people have been with me and Mansfield got behind me 100 per cent,” he said.
“I am old fashioned in my ways and proud to be so. That's why I wanted it in Mansfield and got it in Mansfield. It will be great.”