Josh Wale: My time is now

READY FOR WAR: Josh Wale. Picture: Malcolm Billingham
READY FOR WAR: Josh Wale. Picture: Malcolm Billingham

JOSH Wale refuses to contemplate defeat in his quest for the Commonwealth bantamweight title tomorrow night.

The Brampton fighter believes the time has arrived for him to live up to his potential which starts with securing his first major title.

Wale will meet former British champion Stuart Hall at the Dolphin Centre in Darlington on Friday night with the vacant strap on the line.

And the 24-year-old is determined to return with Commonwealth gold.

He told the Times: “I know that I need to show that I am up there in the bantamweight division and I’m determined to do that against Stuart Hall.

“You don’t make a living out of potential, not if you don’t live up to it.

“This is the real beginning for me, starting with something I’ve dreamed of since I was a little kid.

“Stuart Hall has been there already, he’s had his chances at the European title and he’s not got the job done.

“He’s 32, that’s not old but he’s had his time and this time is mine.”

Wale feels he has a point to prove after his defeat to rising star Kid Galahad earlier this year.

He said: “I didn’t do the right things in that fight and I got punished for it.

“I should never have been in there really because super bantamweight is not my weight.

“But it was a wake-up call for me and I know now what I need to do.

“Defeat does not play on my mind, it’s not eating away at me and I don’t worry about it happening again.

“I’ve gone in there and I’ve been cut before, like I was against Galahad, but that doesn’t play on my mind either.

“You’re setting yourself up to lose if you’re worrying about things like that when you get in there.

“All I’ll say is that I won’t be losing on Friday night.

“I will be Commonwealth champion and the journey will start there.”

To fulfil his promise, Wale will have to triumph in Hall’s backyard.

But the prospect of a crowd being hostile does not faze him.

He said: “I’ve been through this before like when I fought Kid Galahad in Sheffield and you don’t think about it.

“I’ve got nothing to worry about because what can the crowd do.

“There’s just me, him and the referee in the ring and unless the referee starts hitting me as well, I’ll be alright.

“I’ve got about 100 people coming up to Darlington with me so I’m sure they’ll be making their voices heard.

“And when I start doing my stuff, I’m sure I’ll shut Hall’s fans up.”

Wale has prepared for the strength of Hall by sparring with heavier fighters.

He said: “Hall is a strong boxer but I’m more than ready for that.

“It’s exactly what I want in an opponent, someone who will come and want to fight me.

“And I’ll definitely give him a fight – I’m determined to beat him up.”