Oakey promises drama on return

Tony Oakey
Tony Oakey
Joel McIntyre. Picture: Sarah Standing (161623-8349)

No rest for McIntyre after latest win

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TONY OAKEY has promised to serve up drama as the countdown to his comeback gathers pace.

And the Leigh Park Warrior believes American star Jeff Lacy will be in for a shock when they collide on October 1.

Portsmouth’s most decorated professional boxer is set to come out of retirement to meet Lacy.

Oakey has dismissed concerns about stepping into the ring again after a six-year absence at the age of 40.

And the former WBU, British, Commonwealth and Prizefighter champ believes he will be in comparable shape to his glory days when the bell sounds against Lacy.

Lacy built a fearsome reputation in the pro ranks on the way to the world super-middleweight title.

Defeat to Joe Calzaghe arrived a decade ago. But the 39-year-old has remained active, with his 33-contest pro career continuing until last year.

Oakey can’t wait for the clash in Bristol to arrive and believes fight fans will not be disappointed by what is served up.

He said: ‘Jeff Lacy’s saying he’s coming over for an explosive night.

‘He thinks he’s going to bowl me over and is promising the fans he’s going to put on a performance.

‘If he thinks he’s just going to walk through me he’s in for a shock.

‘I think it’s going to be a cracking fight over 10 rounds.

‘I’ve left no stone unturned and I promise you there’s going to be drama.

‘It’s going to be a special night for any boxing fan. How can I turn down this opportunity? This is a one-off.

‘Physically, I think I’m not far off what I was in my boxing career.

‘Mentally, I wasn’t there towards the end. Now I’m 100 per cent there.

‘I’m in great shape and he’s nearly 40 as well. We’ve both been in the sport the same amount of time as amateurs and professionals. We’ve both represented our countries and fought at the top. I think it’s going to be a fantastic night for boxing.’

Oakey’s preparations offer an insight into how seriously he’s taking the Lacy test.

The light-heavyweight has received backing from local outfits Premiership Paving and TM Carpentry & Building Solutions to focus on his training.

Oakey said: ‘I’ve been to Scotland sparring Stephen Simmons and David Brophy, and I’m back up there on Monday for another week.

‘They are both in the British top 10 so that shows the quality I’m getting.

‘I’ve been sparring with Sammy Couzens, Biola Kudus and unbeaten pro Ollie Pattison. So training has been going really well.

‘Me and (local trainer) Mike Ballingall go back a long way so it’s good to work with him. Gary Jones has been helping with the strength and conditioning so it’s a real team effort.’

Tickets for Oakey’s comeback are available from Hollie and Robert Craddock via Facebook.