Boyce ready to roll in ring return
Corey Boyce will make his long-awaited return to the ring in Teachers Rugby Fight Night at Berkeley Institute on Saturday night.
Boyce has completed his three-fight suspension for instigating an altercation with Reyel Bowen, a boxing rival, outside of the ring in October 2016.
In preparation of his comeback bout against Matthew Dionne, from Atlas Gym in Toronto, the heavyweight has been dusting off the cobwebs at Forty Rego’s Gym in Warwick
“I don’t know too much about who I’m fighting, but I still feel pretty confident as I’m in decent shape,” said Boyce, who will headline the event.
“The guys [at Forty Rego’s Gym] have been able to pick out some flaws that I hadn’t been able to pinpoint. Just some things that I’d got stuck in the habit of doing.”
Boyce, who plays rugby for Bermuda in XVs and sevens, said he has benefited from sparring with stablemates Andre Lambe and Tyler Christopher, who are also fighting on Saturday.
“It’s been a while since my last fight, but I’ve been sparring with Andre and Tyler, guys who have been boxing the whole time,” Boyce said. “If I can keep up with those guys, I should be OK.
“Those guys are pursuing boxing at an international level and are young and fit. Having guys like Nikki Bascome around to point things out and seeing the kind of training that he does has also been helpful.”
Boyce has not fought since meeting Keanu Wilson, of Bermuda Sanshou Association, in an exhibition bout at Fight Night on the Beach at Snorkel Park in September 2016.
Although Boyce admits his boxing hiatus has been frustrating, he said his rugby exploits had more than helped fill the void.
“I always wanted to get back in the ring and I definitely have more fights left in me,” he added.
“I was playing rugby for Bermuda at the time [of my suspension], so I was pretty much occupied anyway.”
Boyce has become a crowd favourite after a string of victories in both boxing and Muay Thai. He said he was determined to put on an eye-catching show for the bumper crowd expected on Saturday.
“I always have a lot of fans come out and support me, which I’m grateful for,” he said. “I want to put on a good show for them and I hope they enjoy it.”
The 29-year-old said he has not given up hope of facing Bowen in the ring. The pair had long been linked for a potential showdown before their bust-up.
“It would be nice to get Reyel in the ring, if he ever accepts,” Boyce said. “It doesn’t have to be now or next year, Whenever he’s ready.”