NEWPORT boxer Jerome Samuels is ready to set the record straight in Cardiff next week before claiming his first title in 2014, writes Andrew Penman.
After losing his first five fights as a professional in 2012 the 20-year-old is aiming to make it five straight wins in 2013 on the Warrior Promotions bill at Sophia Gardens in Cardiff on Friday, December 13.
Samuels, son of former IBF inter-continental light-middleweight champion Paul, takes on Gareth Piper, nephew of former Commonwealth light-heavyweight champion Nicky, knowing a win would take his record to five wins and five defeats.
And that would give him the springboard to claim his first belt – the same Welsh light-middleweight title that his father won back in 1998.
He is set to take on Blackwood’s Dai Jones, who he beat in Newport in September, for the Welsh belt in February but first Samuels knows he has to get past Piper.
He’s a bit of a journeyman but you’ve got to try not to underestimate any opponent,” said Samuels.
“I can break even now with this fight and that would be a big thing for me and to get five wins on the spin is not easy for anyone so I would be very happy with that.
“And 2014 is going to be my year. It is going to be Jerome Samuels’ year,” he added.
“This year has been brilliant and I’d like to thank my trainer Richie Garner and Greg Steene as well but next year is going to be even better.
“There is a lot more to come from me.
“I’m going to be boxing for the Welsh title in February. That is great news for me. It’s going to be brilliant and I can’t wait for that.”
And Samuels expects a much more convincing victory than the narrow 58-57 points win he recorded over Jones at the Newport Centre on September 21.
“Dai Jones has been around a bit. He was a very tough opponent in terms of his tactics and I want to put on a smoother performance against him,” he said.
“He deserves the rematch but over ten rounds I’ll stop him.”
Meanwhile Aberdare heavyweight Dorian Darch, who trains with Steve Sims at his Alway gym in Newport, has landed a dream shot at Olympic champion Anthony Joshua.
The 29-year-old Welshman will take on the London 2012 super-heavyweight gold medalist at London’s ExCel Arena on Saturday, December 14.
Tickets for Samuels' fight on December 13 are available on 07808867356.