Craig Woodruff prepares to shock Pace
NEWPORT’S Craig Woodruff is ready to shock Tony Pace and claim the vacant Welsh lightweight title on Saturday night.
The 20-year-old is trained by former British featherweight champion Steve Sims at his Alway gym and he believes Woodruff has the talent to follow in his footsteps.
Pace, who won the British Masters belt in a thrilling contest against Lance Sheehan in December, will start as favourite in many people’s eyes but Sims is certain his fighter will come out on top at the Newport Centre.
“Tony Pace got caught by Lance Sheehan and he was wobbling,” said Sims, also the promoter for Saturday’s show.
“If Craig catches him then he won’t be wobbling – he’ll finish him.
“He’s going to shock the living daylights out of Tony Pace.”
Woodruff is also coming off the back of an impressive win in December having shocked former British super-featherweight champ Carl Johanneson into retirement with a 59-57 victory on points at Lancashire County Cricket Club.
“Craig had a great win last time out and he’s trained harder than he’s ever trained before,” said Sims.
“He beat Johanneson having not done one hill run.
“This time round he’s done it properly and he’s looking better than I’ve ever seen him.
“He’s been doing 10 rounds of sparring with much bigger guys and we’re really building up his inner power.
“He doesn’t look strong but he’s going to surprise a few people. He’s ready.”
A quiet character out of the ring, Woodruff prefers to let his fists do the talking and he will be desperate to win in front of his home crowd having lost to Mitchell Buckland on his last appearance at the Newport Centre in July last year.
That was Woodruff’s only defeat in four fights as a pro.
St Joseph’s fighter Buckland, younger brother of British champ Gary, is in action on the undercard on Saturday.
Also on the bill is Buckland’s stablemate Justyn Hugh who is on the comeback trail after losing his British Masters light-heavyweight title fight to Dean Francis last time out.
For tickets contact Sims on 07761965416 or call the Newport Centre box office on 01633 656757.