On a particularly cold Winter night in East London welterweight, Liam Wells kindly offers a lift to ESBR to the May & Baker Boxing gym in Dagenham, before being grilled about the action-packed opening stages of his professional career.
‘Thanks so much for the interview, I really appreciate it’ is Wells’ first words as we embark on the short drive to the gym.
Smelling like a busy boxing gym should, Liam gives us a tour and introduces us to his trainer before finding a quiet area of the building.
Not afraid to dive into the obvious, (Wells succumbed to the first defeat of his professional career against experienced Northern Irishman Paddy Gallagher via a third-round stoppage in June of last year and subsequently split with trainer Adam Hart afterward, the Essex boy lets loose with a question barely being asked.
‘I make no excuses. At that time of my career (sixth pro fight), I didn’t have the skillset to beat Paddy Gallagher. I was too reliant on being fitter & stronger than Paddy and that wasn’t enough to beat him.’
‘A few people said to me that night that losing would be the best thing that’s ever happened to me, and I was able to tell that that was the case very soon after returning to training.’
‘When I’m fighting for titles the Gallagher fight as well as the 8 rounder against former Southern Area champ Jumanne Camero will stand me in good stead against opponents who won’t have had fights against the level of opposition that I’ve been up against.’
Speaking on getting over that first loss, Liam has clearly managed to move on from the disappointment of the Gallagher fight perhaps due to having an improved focus with new trainer Jamie Williams.
‘My goal in my career is to win the British Title. I perhaps didn’t have that goal before which may have contributed to the decision to take the Gallagher fight.’
‘I’ve already had the discussion with my current trainer on the subject of losing and we both agree that anything can happen in this sport and if I suffer another loss, we’ll regroup and go again. Therefore, I feel having that new focus has made things easier when moving forward rather than staring at the past’.
‘Finally, I remember a few eyebrows being raised when the fight being announced due to Paddy’s experience and perhaps my lack of experience. Looking back I can see why that was the case, but I feel that those who aren’t involved need to understand that I’ve never turned down a fight in my life either as a Boxer or as a Kickboxer.’
Referring back to his trainer situation without being asked about it, Liam admits that the Gallagher fight may not have happened if Jamie had been his Trainer sooner.
‘Adam did so many great things for my career and got me onto some great shows but I think that perhaps he thought that I was better than I was at that stage of my career and I’m not sure Jamie would have let me take that Gallagher fight.’
‘Even though we had recently parted ways, Adam was at ringside for my last fight which although was slightly off-putting for myself and I can imagine it being frustrating for him’.
Touching on his relationship with his new trainer, Liam makes it clear that there’s a different mindset to career choices now compared to beforehand.
‘Over the past couple of months, Jamie & myself have really dropped down to the basics of Boxing and focused on the mistakes made in the Gallagher fight.’
‘I’m still only 25 so there’s no real need to step-up at a fast pace anymore so the plan for this year is to improve fight by fight before going for the big fights.’
Other fighters who suffered a loss early on in their career would have been forgiven for not rushing to get back into the ring or going up against a journeyman as an opponent.
However, Liam went straight back into competitive opposition less than 5 months after his first loss against winning fighter Ohio-kain Iremiren back at York Hall on an MTK bill.
‘The decision to fight Ohio-kain was made when I was still with Adam meaning that Jamie didn’t have much say in the matter.’
‘I was pretty nervous going in there against a tricky opponent rather than a softer touch considering what had happened in my previous. It wasn’t my best performance because of that but I still managed to get through it fairly comfortable and it’s onwards and upwards from now on.’
Scheduled to fight next on March 7th, Liam was inevitably asked about his plans for 2020 with title fights on the horizon as the interview drew to a close.
‘I’m very much got an ‘each fight as it comes’ sort of attitude now but I’d really like to be fighting either for a southern area title or some sort of eliminator before the year is out if I’m honest with you.’
‘The last two months have all been about developing and rectifying mistakes and it’s going to stay that way for the time being.’
The interview rounded off by discussing Liam’s personality. This being the third time ESBR has interviewed Liam as well as being present during four of his fights, like with other boxers, it’s a surprise just how much of a nice, genuine guy he is.
‘This may come as a bit of a shock to you considering what you’ve just said but I’ve been hurt emotionally in boxing a couple of times now so I’ve got more of a ‘fuck everybody’ attitude now.’
‘I don’t want to go through these losing emotions again so if somebody hurts me in the ring, I want to hurt them back.’
‘I’m more of a man now and my nastiness is going to show from now on’.
In what was an unexpected answer, the interview drew to a close with the young welterweight.
Despite suffering his first loss in 2019, Liam Wells is without a doubt a very talented fighter and is one to watch for 2020 and thereafter.
On more than one occasion, Liam mentioned his sponsors and how supportive they’ve been during his career so far:
· Mango Tree Restaurant - A Thai restaurant in Belgravia, London to celebrate the flavor of Bangkok.
· Construction Quirks - A constant feed of inspirational construction an architecture.
· Dalisa Fireplaces -
· Pinches Retreat - Our vision at Pinches is to offer charities, groups and organisations access to this tranquil space to help develop their own visions, aims and goals.