Newbridge’s Bradley Pryce has stepped in at the last minute to face the world class prospect Frankie Gavin just before Christmas. Pryce (34-15, 18KO) accepted the bout 16 hours ago and due to the time he’s had to prepare, the bout will not be sanctioned for the British and Commonwealth welterweight titles that Gavin (17-0, 12KO) owns. Pryce said, “They were umming and arring about two days ago then yesterday they said no. So, I was thinking it’s off and I thought that’s it now but they come back to us last night. Since then, I’ve had to hit the gym a bit, get my weight down and get ready to go.” The bout has been scheduled for ten rounds and Pryce will have to weigh-in under the light-middleweight limit (154lbs) this afternoon. Former Commonwealth champion Pryce said, “Obviously I’m a big boy for welterweight and I had to bring my weight down but I feel good. It’s a ten rounder, obviously I’m not going to get down as far as 10-7 (147lbs). I’m coming in just under 11 stone (-154lbs), it’s a catchweight. “Since the last fight I haven’t been (training) 100% but I have been ticking over and like I said, I’m feeling good in myself and that’s why I’m happy to take the fight. Why not? “I’ve had to put the Christmas nights out on hold, I’m happy I’ve been ticking over and got my weight down as good as it’s going to go. Lets get the fight on.” The pair will fight on the first show at the new Leeds’ First Direct Arena tomorrow night on a co-promoted show by Dennis Hobson Promotions and Queensberry Promotions that will broadcasted on BoxNation (Sky Ch. 437, Virgin Ch. 546). Gavin, 28, was originally scheduled to face Ghana’s Joseph Lamptey (16-5-1, 11KO) but VISA issues derailed that and he was down to face Brazil’s Juliano Ramos (21-6, 18KO) but that didn’t come off either, giving Pryce the opportunity. Pryce last fought in Bulgaria in a brave European title challenge to WBC #1 Sergey Rabchenko which he lost unanimously on points, that was just over a month ago and a weight division higher at light-middleweight. Pryce, 32, had been hopeful of fighting Gavin earlier in the year in September for Gavin’s third defence of his British title and although the Welshman was in the running to be the opponent, it didn’t come off. He said, “Obviously that would have been more ideal, that would have given me plenty of notice and I would have been able to train properly but they chose (David) Barnes. This time the notice is pretty stupid, I’m not going to be 100%, know what I mean? But I will give a good account of myself and look to win. “If I’m honest, I’ve never seen him fight. Like I’ve always said, I’m not a boxing fan and I don’t watch boxing, that’s the way it is. I don’t know much about him, to be honest. I know he’s southpaw, he’s fast, he’s going to be sharp but I’m up for it. Whatever he brings, I’m going to be ready.” Gavin, who aims to be the first man to stop Pryce in over five years, said, “Pryce is a tough, hard, and experienced fighter and has seen it all.  He hasn’t been stopped for almost five years since Matthew Hall took the Commonwealth light-middleweight title off him. Since then he’s fought almost everyone in the division, he took Billy Joe Saunders the distance plus Chris Eubank Jnr and only last month he took the hard-hitting Sergey Rabchenko the full twelve rounds. “I’m leagues above Pryce though and there’s no way I can lose to him.  I’m not disrespecting him or overlooking him, but I believe in my skill and ability and I know I’ve got too much for him.  Obviously if the openings come I’ll look to take him out early and if I can stop him it will be a great night for me.” IMAGE BY CIARAN GIBBONS

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