Islington's John Ryder to fight for WBA World Super middleweight title
- Credit: PA
Islington’s very popular world super-middleweight contender, John Ryder revealed to the Gazette that he will challenge David Morrell for his WBA (Regular) world super-middleweight crown.
Ryder’s promotional team, headed up by Eddie Hearn have 30 days to agree terms with Morrell’s promotional team, the Florida based Warriors Boxing Promotions.
If a deal cannot be agreed in this timescale, the fight will then go to purse offers.
Morrell, 23, a Cuban exile based in Minneapolis, is, like Ryder, a southpaw. He is unbeaten in four paid fights, and was an outstanding amateur in Cuba having engaged in well over 100 contests and having won a gold medal in the light-heavyweight division in the World Youth Championships in 2016 and the Cuban national crown at that weight a year later.
Professional boxing remains banned in Cuba, hence Morrell’s defection to the United States to enable him to punch for pay.
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Ryder said: "It is great news, especially after all the problems that the Covid 19 pandemic caused for boxing last year.
"I wanted and deserved another world title shot after my very dubious points loss to Callum Smith, back in November 2019, and now I’ve got my wish.
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"At the moment, I am working hard in the gym several days each week, also working on building up my strength and running regularly.
"When we get a firm date for the fight, then we will go flat into our usual training regime."
Ryder is not phased whether the fight takes place in this country or in the United States, where he has boxed successfully twice as a professional, but naturally he would prefer home advantage.
“I hope it will take place over here and also that we will be able to have fans present. It would be nice to be top of the bill on a big show or maybe the chief support to another world title contest.
"Last December, when I boxed in Florida, it was 'behind closed doors' and it was a very strange experience.
"I kept hearing the commentary team in action and it was rather an unreal setting. But hopefully when I meet Morrell, fans will be able to be present.”
Ryder continued: “Although I am 32 years-of-age, I still feel young in boxing terms, last year was a good learning experience, but that’s now behind me and now I am ready to crack on an go after the world title.
"All I ask from the officials is wherever it takes place (be it here or in United States), I am judged fairly on my performance.”
Ryder’s 2021 message to his large army of north London fans is “Stay with me, I aim to make this year a very big one and I aim to bring the world title home to Islington.”