Respected trainer Freddie Roach has told Wayne Alwan-Arab to go on the attack next month when he kick starts a season that will make-or-break his boxing ambitions.
The 29 year-old light-middleweight left his London home before Christmas to train with Freddie Roach at the Wild Card gym in Los Angeles where pound-for-pound king Manny Pacquiao and Amir Khan polish the skills that have taken them to the top of the world.
Alwan-Arab aims to make it 14 straight wins at The Coronet in Elephant and Castle,London on Friday, September 16 when manager Mickey Helliet stages a championship bill topped by Croydon punching machine Chas Symonds going toe to toe with Gavin Tait for the vacant Southern Area welterweight belt.
Alwan-Arab also hopes to be battling for belts in the coming months – and preparations for his next fight have been tough !
He faced a tough baptism at the Wild Card gym.
“I walked in and Freddie said: ‘Let’s see what you’ve got,’” remembers Wayne. “He said I should come back in a couple of days when I had got rid of my jet lag.
“But I said: ‘Let’s do it now’ and he put me in the ring with a Japanese guy. Just before the buzzer went, Freddie said: ‘By the way, he’s a world champion.’”
Alwan-Arab was facing Nobuhiro Ishida, a former holder of the WBA interim belt at 11 stones who has since wrecked power puncher James Kirkland inside a round.
“My footwork kept me out of trouble,” remembers Wayne – and he needed to move fast again when paired with Peter Quillin, known as ‘Kid Chocolate.’
“He was trying to kill me,” laughed the Londoner, “and after sparring him, Freddie said: ‘You’ve got a great defence, but I’m an offensive coach.’ I thought he was going to kick me out of the gym. But then he added: ‘We’re going to make a great team.’
“I’m a thinking fighter and Freddie is a very smart guy, so we are always trying new things. I put complete faith in him because he’s so knowledgeable.
“If you put the work in and he thinks you have potential, he will look after you. Freddie is always honest. He will tell you if he thinks you’re rubbish. But he never takes any money off me for training and always has time for me.”
Alwan-Arab will take all he has learned at the Wild Card gym into the ring with him at The Coronet next month and says his fans can expect to see him go on the attack in his six-round fight.
“I’m holding my ground more now,” he said. “We’ve been working on staying in the pocket. Freddie says it’s going to hurt sometimes, but if I relax, learn to block punches and improve my workrate, then I will be OK. I’m planning to impress at The Coronet.”
Alwan-Arab hopes to box twice more in October before returning to Los Angeles and admits the coming season is crucial.
“I need to be fighting for titles this season,” said Wayne, who thanked sponsors Tradition Brokers. “I’m 29 years old and need to get a move on.”
August 9, 2011