Christopher hungry to build on burgeoning professional career
Tyler Christopher is more desperate than ever to make a return to the ring as he prepares for his second bout as a professional.
The 25-year-old enjoyed a blistering start to life in the paid ranks, securing a unanimous points decision victory over Britian’s Josh Hodgins in a four-round super-welterweight bout at the H Suite in Edgbaston, Birmingham, England last month.
Christopher is now determined to build on his encouraging debut – which saw him knock his opponent through the ropes in the final round – in a scheduled four-round welterweight bout against 33-year-old Steven Floyd, at Villa Park, the home of Premier League side Aston Villa, on November 27.
“Everything is going really well, I’ve just been training hard and working up to this upcoming fight,” said Christopher, who was forced to wait to make his professional debut for more than a year, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“My debut fight was a great experience. My coach actually feels I’ve improved further since then even though it’s been a short turnaround.
Christopher is looking forward to adding more experience to his expanding arsenal.
“I feel like I’m getting better but there are certain things that can be improved in the ring. That’s where you learn your ring craft and how to best read your opponents,” he said. “That comes through fight experience. It is a completely different level to sparring in the gym where there is a mutual respect; you’re not trying to knock each other out.
“I feel like I tasted blood in that first fight and that’s made me hungrier than ever to get back in the ring again.”
As well as giving him the key opportunity to hone his ring craft, most crucially, the experience forced Christopher to face any lingering anxiousness, having conceded to some nerves in the build up to his debut.
“It was definitely a big relief to come through the fight and get the victory,” he added. “The biggest thing I took away from it was not to let the occasion or the pre-fight nerves get the better of me.
“It gave me a lot of confidence and helped a lot to be able to finally get my debut out the way. Thankfully everything went right and it taught me a lot about having composure inside the ring and never letting everything else to do with the fight get on top of me.”
While his immediate focus remains on the upcoming bout, Christopher – who has not fought in Bermuda since his final amateur outing in 2019 – reiterated his desire to return home and feature alongside fellow Bermudian professionals Nikki Bascome, Andre Lambe and Mikey Parsons, as part of the rescheduled Epic Entertainment promotion fight card on January 29.
That event, which was originally scheduled for earlier this month, was delayed due to ongoing Covid-19 restrictions on island.
Despite the setback, Christopher, who is hopeful of having at least one more fight before the new year, remains excited about the prospect of performing in front of a home crowd once again.
“If the opportunity is there and the promoters want me to come home and be part of the event then it is definitely one I’m willing to take,” he added. “I’d love to come home and show the Bermudian crowd what I’ve learnt and how much I’ve grown as a boxer.
“The aim is to get in at least three fights before then. I think that would be the best thing for me to do before hopefully coming home. I want to make sure I’m ready to come back and show everyone what I’m all about.
“If that promotion goes ahead when it is planned for, I’ll do all I can to be there.”