Joe Laws is chasing the perfect 10 having made what he believes is the perfect move in his career.
The irrepressible ‘Benwell Bomber’ takes on fellow unbeaten Super-Lightweight Rylan Charlton on Saturday, live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US, in his first bout since leaving behind his beloved Toon to base himself in Lanzarote.
Already onto his third coach of his career, the 26-year-old (9-0, 5KOs) drops the ‘Jack-the-lad’ persona to say he is deadly serious that this is the route he needs to take to reach the top.
“I’ve moved out to Lanzarote where the training is mint and the lads are spot on,” he said Laws. “I’ve really felt the benefit of it. At home I think I was too much in the comfort zone, out there I train go back to my apartment, train again then back to my apartment and so on. I needed a bit of structure and it’s working well for me. To be honest, I can’t wait to get back out there.”
Laws will be guided by Champions Gym’s Jonathan O’Brien for the first time in the East of England Arena. The Irishman was a good fighter himself, winning nine and drawing one of his 12 contests. He is in the corner for an acid test with the undefeated Norwich fighter Charlton (5-0-1, 2 KOs) very much a live opponent.
“It’s my hardest fight to date, a big step up, but I’m feeling good and can’t wait for Saturday,” said Laws. “With this pandemic, gone are the days when you are the 70 and the opponent is the 30. This is a good 50-50 fight, but I think that will be where you see the best of me.
“I’ve been training hard, had some cracking sparring and come Saturday I’m going to perform. I’m going to knock him out, flatten him. I’m throwing with intent to hurt. He’s training to knock me out, know what I mean? Once I get in the ring, it’s personal. Come Saturday I will show no respect whatsoever.”
Even before moving from the Tyne to the Canaries, Laws had shown signs of an increase in maturity as he moves from crowd-pleaser to contender.
Gone in his last fight were some of the outrageous swings and he looked so much better for that in a second-round stoppage win against Jan Prokes at the Newcastle Eagles Community Arena at the start of March.
“When I hear people say, ‘Laws can’t box’ I laugh my bollocks off thinking ‘yeah, yeah’,” he said. “I’ve come from a very good gym at Birtley ABC. I’ve done hundreds of rounds with Pat and Luke McCormack, Callum French, Thomas Hodgson, Cyrus Pattison and more. Sparring with them has made me a teak-tough kid, but could I do it if I couldn’t box?”
Laws vs. Charlton is part of a huge night of boxing at the East of England Arena in Peterborough, Geordie favourite Lewis Ritson (20-1, 12 KOs) takes on former long-reigning World Champion Miguel Vazquez (42-9, 16 KOs), 2016 Rio Olympian Qais Ashfaq (8-0, 3 KOs) meets Salford’s Marc Leach (14-1-1, 3 KOs) in an Eliminator for the British Super-Bantamweight Title, West Rainton’s Thomas Patrick Ward (29-0, 4 KOs) fights Thomas Essomba (10-6, 4 KOs) over ten rounds at Super-Bantamweight, Birmingham’s Kane Baker (13-7) meets Liverpool’s Meshech Speare (5-0, 3 KOs) over six rounds at Super-Lightweight and Catford’s Ellie Scotney makes her professional debut against Bec Connolly (3-7).