By John Evans
It is impossible to talk to Nathan Brough, 11-0 (2), without mentioning the hand injuries which have restricted him to just three outings in four years so we might as well get it out of the way immediately.
The 29-year-old light welterweight outpointed Jason Nesbitt at the end of May but seemed to hurt his hand midway through the fight. Any joy at having recorded a long awaited victory was tempered by the throbbing inside his left glove. Thankfully, things seem to be improving.
“My hands are solid now but I picked a bit of damage up on my left hand,” Liverpool’s Brough told Boxingscene recently. “It was only a bruised knuckle but obviously that’s pretty minor for me! It was good to try out a few things we’d been working on in the gym, blow the cobwebs off and get the rounds in.
“I started to go early in the fight with me using my jab and left hook. Obviously, Nesbitt’s got a hard head and every time I landed it started to hurt. I opened up in one of the rounds and caught him on top of the head and thought I’d broke my hand. I went back to the corner and told Paul [Stevenson] and he told me to just get through the rounds and box him.
“When they cut my glove off, my hand was swelled up and obviously I’ve had bad hands in the past but as the night went on the swelling went down and I started being able to make a fist so thankfully it wasn’t broken.
“Everything’s good and I’m waiting for the new season to start. I don’t think I’ll be out until September so I’ll stay in the gym.”
Brough has entrusted his development to the team at Everton Red Triangle gym. At his best, the 6ft tall scouser will be a handful for any 140lber in the country. He is capable of using his height to box at range or working inside and finishing with a powerful left hook.
The gym is booming and Brough, Tom Stalker, Steve Lewis and Ryan Farrag are benefitting from training in the same gym as British and Commonwealth flyweight champion Kevin Satchell, English super bantamweight champion ‘Jazza’ Dickens and Courtney Fry.
“I love it. Being around the lads and being full time,” he says. “I used to have to hold a job down but sine I moved to ERT I’ve got a sponsor. Paul and Mick [Stevenson, the ERT coaches] are brilliant at what they do. They have a plan for every individual boxer in there. No fighters are treated the same. It’s all based on us. Where our mistakes and flaws are so every fighter has individual needs.”
The light welterweight division is full of potential targets. British champion Darren Hamilton is an extremely underrated fighter. Shayne Singleton defends his English title against Tyrone Nurse in September; Lenny Daws performed well in a recent European title fight and the likes of Danny Connor, Willie Limond and Chris Evangelou would all be meaningful scalps.
There is no doubt that Brough is every bit as talented as the men currently contesting the domestic titles but he is acutely aware that he needs to build up some momentum. With that in mind, he has set himself a goal.
“Hopefully I’ll get a big fight in September against a kid with a winning record and who wants what I want, make a mark and move on to British titles and all that comes with it. I want a fight like that that people stand up and take notice of.
“In six months, I’d like to have the British strap and if it means that I have to fight for the English title to get there then definitely. I’m not naming anyone, I’m willing to fight anybody at light welterweight.
“I don’t duck fights and I never will. In my opinion that’s what boxing needs. It needs undefeated lads taking each other on and breathes life into boxing. Lads like myself taking each other on and putting it all on the line.”
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