Former professional boxer Ryan Davies has vowed to avenge his loss against Micky Barnes when he returns to action at the Hindley Rose Club next week.
Davies, who switched sports from boxing to professional wrestling after his early retirement last year, made his Grand-Pro Wrestling debut on Saturday May 18.
While the outcome of the match was far from a dream result for Davies, there were plenty of positives to take from his professional debut.
He looked more than comfortable in his new in-ring surroundings, and he even surprised his 150-plus fans in attendance with his intricate wrestling skills.
Davies was dominant in his bout against Barnes, and only tasted defeat after he was struck with an illegal low blow by his opponent when the referee was blind sighted by Big Joe and Drill.
After the numbers-game was a key factor in Davies’ debut defeat, the Blackpool-ace’s highly anticipated rematch against Barnes has now been changed into a lumberjack match.
A lumberjack match is a regular match where the outside of the ring is surrounded by wrestlers. If a wrestler is knocked out of the ring, the lumberjacks will immediately put them back in.
Davies revealed revenge is at the forefront of his mind when he challenges Barnes on Friday June 21 at Hindley.
“Revenge is on the agenda,” he said.
“I want to make him pay and avenge my defeat. I took too much of my boxing mentality into my last match. I’ve always been about a fair fight but that’s not always the case in wrestling, but I’ve learned my lesson and I’ll be ready this time.
“I came into his world last time from a world built around honour in boxing. It was my mistake to not expect underhanded tactics, so I’m not irritated, and just motivated to reverse the decision this time by any means necessary.
“I feel like a bigger, better and badder version this time round. I’ve upped my weightlifting become stronger and really worked on my wrestling which is an area I came second in last time. I think I will surprise him now.
“Being a fan of wrestling all of my life, it’s surreal to be put in a lumberjack match. The ring being surrounded by wrestlers to keep us in is certainly interesting!
“I’m happy with the stipulation though as it evens things up. Neither of us have an advantage as the wrestlers outside have no allegiance. Ultimately it will come down to just myself and Mick, and that’s exactly what I want.”
Although Davies was initially sceptical about transitioning into wrestling, the 31-year-old said it has been a good move.
“I literally can’t wait for the show,” he said.
“I can honestly say wrestling has been one of the best decisions I have ever made, it’s been great for me physically and mentally. It’s allowed me to still out my athleticism to the test in-front of a fantastic live crowd.
“I’ve worked so-hard to transition from boxer to wrestler, and I’ve learned some new tricks. I aim to top my performance last time and make the crowd happy.
“I’ve always said that earning the respect of the wrestling fans at Grand Pro Wrestling is my number one priority, so hopefully I can keep working towards doing that.
“I’d like to say thank-you to everyone who has bought a ticket to come and support. This show has something for everyone. There’s so much talent, and to top it off, I have a real score to settle with the bad lad.
“This is a show that you cannot afford to miss! Tickets are still available so please get in touch with GPW and enjoy a great night of family entertainment!”