‘I’ve started to love it again’ – hungry Liam Griffiths chasing unique boxing hundred milestone following successful fight comeback
Bognor-based Griffiths, 35, made the ideal ring return, securing just a sixth pro victory with a points verdict decision going in his favour over Lancashire opponent Dale Arrowsmith in front of his Portsmouth support.
Middleweight Griffiths, managed by city-based trainer Michael Ballingall – who is the father of Mikey McKinson – was due back for his finale after more than two years out of the ring.
But with the thirst back for the sport he thought he may never return to with his previous bout coming back in December 2019, he is set on reaching 100 pro fights before even considering retiring.
And with the century milestone standing just seven fights away, Griffiths – with a 6-86-1 overall record – is not prepared to walk away from boxing just yet.
‘It was billed as my last fight and it was going to be, I thought I’d have one more go, it has to be now (getting to 100 pro bouts),’ said Griffiths.
‘I just felt so young and so good in there (ring), with the tickets that went so well, it’d be a shame to have come this far and not get to the hundred.
‘I’ve done six fights in six weeks (earlier in his career) – I’m not saying I’d do that now – I could potentially have that wrapped up by the end of July.
‘I’ve started to love it again. As soon as I started training and making the sacrifices, all of a sudden there’s more purpose in your life. It’s what made me think I could do it, I’m 35, but it’s an age not a disability.
‘Although I’m older, I’m mentally stronger, less impulsive and I’m not as reckless. Where you potentially lack in some areas in terms of youthfulness and different stuff, you gain in other areas. You’ve got a head on your shoulders, you’re not as reckless, impulsive and all that type of stuff.’
Griffiths only fully resumed training six weeks before receiving a phone call from Ballingall and accepting the opportunity to return to the ring again in Portsmouth.
But he is confident he can continue working his schedule around his day job as a groundworker and personal training sessions he offers to make a century of pro bouts become a reality.
Griffiths added: ‘I’m so happy. In the build-up to this I’d had the time off and stuff, there were times when I thought when I wasn’t going to box again, as soon as Michael (Ballingall; manager) said there’s going to be a home show which I could be on I thought, ‘let’s do it or retire’.
‘There were six weeks to get fit – I’m already fit because of my day job (groundworker) and personal training I’m always fit – but I’m not ever fighting fit.
‘Where I work eight hours then three hours one-to-one personal training at night, it’s hard to squeeze the training in.’