Could Commonwealth glory see Josh Wale hang up his gloves?

Josh Wale
Josh Wale

Josh Wale says he could walk away from boxing if he wins the Commonwealth title on Saturday night.

The Brampton super bantamweight faces the rated Gamal Yafai for the Commonwealth strap in Leeds.

And he says the prospect of achieving a life-long dream has him questioning whether he would be able to draw up new goals if he continued to fight.

“It’s all that I’ve wanted since I first started as an eight-year-old,” Wale told The Times. “That’s 20 years of chasing a British or Commonwealth title.

“It would be the perfect way of going out. I’ve been climbing a mountain for 20 years and I’d have finally reached the top.

“You wonder what your goals would be after you’ve achieved something you’ve been chasing for so long.

“It’s all I ever wanted so what happens when I get it.

“Would I have the motivation to keep going? I guess I won’t know until it happens.”

The prospect of Wale hanging up his gloves while still in his prime seems unlikely, given his dedication to and passion for the sport.

The slightest hint of a major challenge would likely make any retirement a short one – something he admits himself.

He said: “Whether I’d actually be able to walk away or not, I don’t know.

“Boxing is my life and it has been for so long. When I stop fighting, I’ll still be in boxing, training and managing, and probably for the rest of my life.

“Everyone knows how dedicated I am to boxing so I don’t think many people would really think that I’d pack it all in.”

Before any contemplation of retirement for the 28-year-old comes the challenge of Yafai, brother of super flyweight world title hopeful Kal.

Yafai has won all nine of his fights so far, stopping four early but Wale is his toughest opponent so far.

The Birmingham fighter is the hot favourite for Saturday’s fight and Wale is determined to prove the bookies wrong.

He said: “Has Yafai proved himself yet? I don’t think he has.

“I’ve been in with the very best this country has to offer and no one has wiped the floor with me. I’ve proven what I can do and there is still more to come.

“It’s all question marks with Yafai. I’m not sure why he’s such a hot favourite because it’s all based on what people think he is.

“I think he’s being judged a bit by who is brother is. And there’s always the hype behind Matchroom fighters.

“But people know for a fact what I can do. And I’m going to show that on Saturday night.”

Wale says he is happy to wait and see what Yafai brings when the two step between the ropes this weekend.

He said: “He’s come forward in fights in the past and if he does that, it’ll play into my hands.

“And all the bookies around here will be crying.”