LONDON - Former British, Commonwealth and European super-bantamweight champion Kid Galahad is back. He's back in the ring, he's back on the hunt for titles and he's back chasing domestic rivals.
On July 9 at the Manchester Arena, Galahad, as part of the undercard to Tyson Fury's world heavyweight title blockbuster with Wladimir Klitschko, looks to follow up a routine April comeback win and once again put the super-bantamweight division on notice.
“The opponent in April (Simas Volosinas) wasn't the best but it felt good to be back,” says Galahad, who'd been out the ring for 19 months. “It felt like I'd been away on holiday for a very long time and then came home and everything was nice and comfortable. You're back in your old bed, you're surrounded by home comforts. It felt right. It felt like that's where I should be.”
Though unable to compete for the best part of two years, Galahad, a product of Sheffield's Wincobank gym, stayed disciplined and in shape and trained as if it was the only option available to him.
“I just got on with it,” says Galahad, having recently returned from a week at John Severs' Vista Boxing Gym in La Nucia, Spain. “Things like this happen in life and you have to deal with it.
“People are sometimes out for two or three years through injury. They can't train or do anything for a lot of that time. But my situation wasn't like that. I was still able to keep ticking over. Even the great Muhammad Ali was out the ring for three years and he came back to do amazing things.
“I didn't go on lads' holidays or start messing around and drinking. I didn't do any of that. I just stayed in the gym and kept training and developing as a fighter.
“When I get back fighting top opposition, you'll see all the stuff I've been working on. I didn't let that time go to waste. I've progressed a lot.
“If anything, I feel better now than I did two years ago. I feel more developed and more rounded as a fighter.
“I want to be fighting for titles again as soon as possible. I know I have to build myself back up, and go through a couple of routine fights, but, if you ask me, I'm ready for titles now. If you've been there once, you can get there again.”
Once back in the title mix or, indeed, in possession of a belt or two, Galahad, 26, hopes to lure either Carl Frampton or Scott Quigg into a lucrative, all-British dust-up.
“For any of us to make big money, we all have to fight each other,” he explains. “There are no other big fights in these lower weight-classes. The fights in the UK between UK fighters are the fights that make sense right now.
“We'll have to see what happens with Carl Frampton. He's moved to featherweight and is about to fight Leo Santa Cruz. I don't see him winning that fight, I think he'll get stopped, but I wish him well.
“Scott Quigg will always try and avoid me. In fact, Scott Quigg will try and avoid anyone who is half decent. In his last fight (with Frampton) he got badly exposed. He says he wants to fight (Guillermo) Rigondeaux and this guy and that guy, but, when he gets back fighting again, I guarantee you he won't be fighting big names or dangerous guys. He always name-drops the good fighters in the division and then ends up fighting some guy nobody knows.”
In February, however, Quigg did face Frampton in a world title unification fight. It was a spectacle Galahad, 19-0 (10 KOs), found tough to stomach.
“It was a contender for the worst pay-per-view main event in history,” he says. “The only ones that rival it are Tony Bellew's rematch with Nathan Cleverly and David Haye's fight with Audley Harrison.
“Frampton and Quigg talked it up for years and then got in there and were both scared to lose. Neither of them did a thing for twelve rounds. There were no risks taken. There was no attempt to provide entertainment or make a statement. They were both just happy to get paid. Fights like that give this sport a bad name.”