Boxing


Calzaghe ready for Jones; Roy Jones Jr. Training Camp

When Joe Calzaghe boxes at Madison Square Garden on November 8 against Roy Jones Jr, he will not only be risking his own legacy, but he will be following in the footsteps of some of his greatest countrymen. Nearly 40 years ago, Tom Jones played two nights at Madison Square Garden, but it has been a long time since a Welshman has boxed in New York. But the city has always held a great lure for the Welsh, from Dylan Thomas, to Shirley Bassey to Gwyneth Jones and there was a golden generation of Welsh boxers who came to the Big Apple..

Jimmy Wilde is generally regarded as the greatest boxer Wales has produced, the greatest pre-Joe Calzaghe anyway. Wilde was born in Merthyr Tydfil in 1892 but grew up in the Rhondda Valley. Wilde claimed to have had more than 800 fights, a figure that is disputed, but one which probably includes hundreds of fights in fairground boxing booths. What is not disputed, however, is that Wilde had an unbeaten streak of 103 bouts. He won the world flyweight title in 1916, but despite winning several times in the United States, including once in Jersey City, Wilde did not box in New York until his very last bout, defending the flyweight title against Pancho Villa at the Polo Grounds in 1923. Wilde, who was past his best, was knocked out in seven rounds.

Freddie Welsh, from Pontypridd, managed to be a huge success on both sides of the Atlantic, having at onetime been a drifter in the US. He won the world lightweight title in 1914 in London and lost it to Benny Leonard three years later. He also beat Jim Driscoll and Johnny Dundee.

Welsh boxed 18 times in New York City between 1909 and 1922, facing Johnny Frayne, Jack Goodman, Pal Moore, Phil Bloom (twice), Joe Shugrue (twice), Willie Beecher, Ad Wolgast, Willie Ritchie, Johnny Lustig, Charley White, Frank Whitney, Leonard (three times), Johnny Kilbane and Archie Walker. He boxed six times at the Garden winning only two.His first meeting with Leonard, in 1916, was at the Garden. His only win against the great Leonard was the second (of three) at the Washington Park Athletic Club in Brooklyn.

After losing the lightweight title to Leonard, Welsh left his ring career behind him and enlisted, serving as a lieutenant in World War I and helping disabled veterans at the Walter Reed Hospital. He left the army in 1920 and returned to the ring, losing his last fight to Archie Walker in Brooklyn in 1922.

He made plenty of money in the ring, which he invested in a health farm. He also had a gym in New Jersey. But the health farm went broke and Welsh died penniless of a heart attack in the Hotel Sidney on 65thStreet in 1927, aged just 41. F Scott Fitzgerald is said to have based part of The Great Gatsby on Welsh's life. He was awarded a military funeral and 5,000 visited Boyertown Chapel, off Times Square, where he was laid to rest.

When 100,000 people turn up for your funeral, it means you must have accomplished something in your life and Jim Driscoll, from Cardiff, accomplished plenty. Driscoll's career from 1901-1919consisted of 77 fights - not many for the era, but his 63-4 record was pretty sensational. Driscoll won British, European and world (British version) featherweight titles and was one of the first British boxers to have a successful spell in the United States. He boxed in the New York four times, winning all four. The most famous win was over Abe Attell at the National Athletic Club on East 24thSt, by a newspaper decision over ten rounds. After that win he was regarded as world featherweight champion in Europe.

Tommy Farr, known as the Tonypandy Terror after the small town he was from, was hand-picked as the opponent for Joe Louis's first defense of his world heavyweight title in 1937 at Yankee Stadium. He surprised everyone by taking the Brown Bomber the distance and giving him a tough fight. He would then have his next four fights in New York, all at the Garden, against two former heavyweight champions Max Baer and James J Braddock. He also boxed Lou Nova and Red Burman and lost all four of his Garden fights on points.

The other Welsh boxer to have made it to New York was Danny Thomas, a light-heavyweight from Newport who boxed under the name of Gypsy Daniels. After winning a heavyweight competition in London, he made his way to New York in 1922, where he appeared in a heavyweight hopeful competition at the Garden, beating Stewart Bell. He boxed eight times in New York in total, once more at the Garden where he beat Fred Clarke in 1923. He only boxed for one title, losing for the Welsh light-heavyweight title in 1930.

Other British boxers to have appeared at Madison Square Garden:

Owen Moran, the former world bantamweight champion from Birmingham, lost to Joe Shrugue on a seventh round TKO in 1914. On the same bill, Sapper O'Neill, from Gloucester, lost to Johnny Dundee.

Randolph Turpin, most famous for taking the world middleweight title from Sugar Ray Robinson, lost to Carl 'Bobo' Olson at the Garden in 1953.

There has been plenty of controversy involving British boxers at the Garden. In 1972, Ken Buchanan was robbed of his world lightweight title when he was knocked out by Roberto Duran, the finishing punch being not only brutally low but two seconds after the bell, a pair of fouls that seemed to completely mystify referee Johnny LoBianco. Buchanan boxed at the Garden four times. In 1999, Lennox Lewis's world heavyweight title unification bout against Evander Holyfield was controversially scored a draw, a decision which nearly turned into a diplomatic issue. Lewis boxed at the Garden three times.

Naseem Hamed knocked out Kevin Kelley in the fourth round of a thriller at the Garden in 1997. On the undercard were future world heavyweight title challenger Danny Williams and Ricky Hatton.

Top ten Welsh boxers: 1: Joe Calzaghe. 2: Jimmy Wilde. 3: Freddie Welsh. 4: Jim Driscoll. 5: Howard Winstone. 6: Tommy Farr. 7: Colin Jones. 8: Brian Curvis. 9: Enzo Maccarinelli. 10: Johnny Owen.

"CALZAGHE VS JONES JR. "BATTLE OF THE SUPER POWERS"

Tickets for Calzaghe vs Jones are priced at $1500, $1000, $750, $500, $250 and $150 and are on sale and available at the Garden Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets or online at ticketmaster.com. Calzaghe vs. Jones is presented by Square Ring, Inc. and Calzaghe Promotions in association with Madison Square Garden. The bout will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View.

The Calzaghe vs. Jones pay-per-view telecast, beginning at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT, will be produced and distributed by HBO Pay-Per-View and will be available to more than 71 million pay-per-view homes. The telecast will be available in HD-TV for those viewers who can receive HD. HBO Pay-Per-View is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry. For Calzaghe vs. Jones fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.

HBO's all-access reality series, "Calzaghe/Jones 24/7", returns with an all new episode this Sunday, Nov. 2 at 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. ET/PT. Episode one can be seen on HBO ON DEMAND.


Roy Jones Jr. Training Camp

California, PA, October 28, 2008 – In a battle between two of boxing’s superpowers, world’s will collide when “Super” Joe Calzaghe (45-0, 32 KOs) clashes with “Superman” Roy Jones, Jr. (52-4, 38 KOs) in “Battle of the Superpowers,” a scheduled 12-rounder for the Ring Magazine Light Heavyweight Championship belt. The bout is scheduled to take place on Saturday, November 8th at the Mecca of Boxing, Madison Square Garden and broadcast live on HBO Pay-Per-View.

Tickets for this battle between two of the sport’s icons - three years apart, but more different than the ocean that separates them - are priced at $1500, $1000, $750, $500, $250 and $150 and are on sale and available at the Garden Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets or online at ticketmaster.com. Calzaghe vs. Jones is presented by Square Ring, Inc. and Calzaghe Promotions in association with Madison Square Garden.

Below is a chronological breakdown of Roy’s month of training.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Roy's day started at 7am when he wakes up in California, PA. California, PA is located 1 hour South of Pittsburgh. Camp is located up a steep, curvy, one lane road in the middle of the woods. The trees are starting to change colors throughout Pennsylvania. He wakes up and heads to get his morning cup of coffee. He usually switches between french vanilla creamer and creme burlee creamer. Today he had french vanilla creamer. He heads to the fitness center, which is @30 min away from camp, to get his morning workout done. He alternates from running outside and going to the fitness center. While he is in the fitness center, he will do a strenuous cardio workout and then continue on lifting weights and doing abdominals. After he finishes here, he heads back and gets ready for his special breakfast. "The Roy Jones Jr Special"...This consist of a big bowl with: grits, 3 scramble eggs, 4 pieces of cut up sausage links, 4 pieces of crispy bacon cut into small pieces, all then mixed together in one big bowl and served to him. He usually has some type of juice to drink. During the next few hours, he will do interviews and he tries catches up with his rest and get ready for his 2nd training session at 5pm. At 5pm, he gets ready to train for the second time. He trains, no sparring today, speed and endurance training...For dinner Coach Merk (Alton Merckerson) cooks grilled chicken, mixed broccoli and cauliflower and baked potatoes. Roy settles in @9pm to get plenty of rest to start his next day....

Thursday, October 2, 2008
Roy's day started at 7am when he woke up in California, PA. He started his morning with his morning cup of coffee and French Vanilla creamer. It was a cool brisk morning, when Roy hit the mountain top for his morning run. Camp is located up a steep, curvy, one lane road in the middle of the woods. Roy uses this road to run up the steep hills. This morning a fellow boxer from Pensacola, Florida, Keiyon Bussey ran with Roy. Keiyon is on the November 8th card. Looking over the mountaintops you see the beautiful countryside. After he finishes his run, he showers and gets ready for breakfast. In his 2nd workout, he sparred today. After dinner, Roy settled in by watching ESPN Thursday Night Football game, Pittsburgh vs. South Florida.

Friday, October 3, 2008
Roy's day started at 6am when he woke up in California, PA. It was another chilly morning. You can tell fall has set in for good and a cold winter is not far behind. He started his morning with his morning cup of coffee and creme burlee creamer. He headed outside with Keiyon for his morning run up the mountain. He's been thinking of naming the mountain. As he opens the door, he feels the morning chill brush against his skin. The trees have still been changing colors, orange, yellow, light brown. Before you know it, off he goes....After he finishes his run, he showers and gets ready for breakfast. "The Roy Jones Jr Special"...Don't forget, this consist of a big bowl with: grits, 3 scramble eggs, 4 pieces of cut up sausage links, 4 pieces of crispy bacon cut into small pieces, all then mixed together in one big bowl and served to him. In his 2nd workout, he worked on speed, agility and endurance training. He incorporates the speed bag and jump rope throughout this training session. After dinner, Roy, Keiyon (boxer from Pensacola), Gabe Brown (boxer from Pensacola), and Alfy Smith (assistant trainer), head out to support a local high school football game to support the Clairton Bears who are 5-0. The Bears win!!! And Roy and his crew heads back to camp to get ready for another day of training...

Saturday, October 4, 2008
Today is Saturday and Roy is still at it. He started his morning with a cup of coffee and his French vanilla creamer. He had a light breakfast, which was a bowl of grits and a glass of juice. He sparred at1pm. After he sparred, Coach Merckerson cooked him a meal and he chilled watching College Football for the rest of the night.

Saturday, October 11, 2008
Roy laid in bed thinking about his day...Saturday during training camp is no different than any other day. However, today is a day where he wanted to change things up a little...He likes to hit his body in a different training method every now and then. He doesn't want to give himself a long break between training sessions. The sunshine was bright and it was another beautiful day in PA...The temperature was 75 degrees...Roy said, "what a gorgeous day!!!!" He got his coffee for the drive and he headed to the gym this morning and did his cardio, came back and ate his Roy Jones Jr Special 2 (which remember is an omelet with 4 pieces of crumbled bacon and 4 sausages crumbled in 4 eggs). He ate half of it and saved the rest for later, because he was going to spar very soon. The gym was a little warm because of the sunshine, which made it great for a training session. Before he sparred, he made time for some special needs children that came to watch. He sat with the kids in the center of the ring and made pictures with them and then he turned it on and sparred...Before Roy trains each day, he has thought seriously about what he wants to work on during the training sessions and works on perfecting his thoughts. After training, eating and showering, Roy piled up on the couch and watched college football flipping from game to game all night long...Roy loves to watch football...

Roy's morning started with his normal cup of coffee and creamer. French Vanilla won the pick this morning. And then he heads to Complete Fitness for his morning cardio and weights. He mixes between a couple of different cardio machines and then in moves into the back of the gym, to do his weights and abdominals. As he walks around the gym everyone respects his space and doesn't bother him during his training session. The normal gym goers say hey to him and move on. If anyone wants anything signed he will stop by the front desk and sign it on his way out. After he finished his morning training, he ate his Roy Jones Jr Special and laid down for a nap. Today he had a special activity planned at the Meadowlands Horse Race Track in Washington, PA. At 2:00pm Roy was invited to ride in the starting truck for the harness horse racing. Roy loves horses, so you could see the excitement in his eyes as he jumped in the truck. The starter truck drives the horses around with the gate and has to get to 35mph with all the horses lines up before he makes it to a certain point on the horse track. This was actually something Roy had never done in his life. After this, he headed back to camp to get ready for his late afternoon training session. He worked on his endurance, speed, balance and agility...It's Friday Night and after he eats he goes to see the Clairton Bears play their Friday Night High School Football game in Clairton, PA...He arrives and walks out to the sideline and stands in his normal spot to cheer the Bears on...The Bears win 55-6 and now they are 7-0...Roy congratulate the kids on another great game, and heads back to camp to move on to another day of training...


Sunday, October 12, 2008
Today is Sunday and it is Roy's off day. He has had a long hard week of training. He goes to breakfast with the guys and then gets ready for NFL Football. As he watched football today, he played video games on his computer. He refreshes his mind and body with the day off and is ready to hit it hard on Monday morning...

Monday, October 13, 2008
Today started off the week for Roy...He headed to the gym bright and early, with his morning cup of coffee in hand. The weather is a little warm today. However, it is expected to cool off by the weekend. The trees are still changing colors, but as soon as the cool weather comes the bright color leaves will die. Coach Merckerson, Alfy, Keiyon and Gabe go to the gym with Roy. Keiyon usually works out with Roy and everyone else goes in their own direction. While he was at the gym, he did his normal routine of cardio and weights mixing in a couple of new exercises in the weight room. He said he felt good today. He rested up in his break time and sparring started at 5pm. 24/7 came back in town today and will record Roy until the fight. Roy offers advice to his other boxers while they are in the ring sparring. Roy's guys listen to every word of advice he has to offer them. He eats dinner, Coach Merk's special was cabbage tonight. Roy settled in by watching Monday Night Football and playing some video games on his computer.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Things stayed the same in Roy's routine today. He was up bright and early, coffee in hand (french vanilla creamer today), and out the door to the gym. 24/7 was filming Roy's day again. His gym workout was consistent in what he has been doing, cardio and weights. Today on his ride back to camp, the traffic was rather thick because of construction and everything was moving into one lane. In between his break, Roy rested watching ESPN and playing his video games on his computer. Roy only watches a few channels, ESPN, Cartoon Network or the Discover Channel. Later that day he started his training at 5pm. Today is speed, endurance, balance and agility. He works the speed bag, jump rope, shadow boxes and a few other drills he adds into training. Roy and everyone in camp quickly got dressed after training and attended a press conference at the Rythm House. Numerous reporters showed up to get an interview with him, along with others who just wanted autographs or pictures with him. Roy spoke very well to everyone and then he headed back to camp to get ready for his next day.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Roy stumbled out of bed this morning and went and peeped out his bedroom window. He knew what he was looking for. From Roy's window, you can see miles of green grass and beautiful trees over the hillside. He looked off to the side and there they stood, 4 deer (2 Big Bucks) and 2 turkeys...Roy started his day off with a big smile on his face, as he walked into to kitchen saying to the others, "Look outside, look outside!" Everyone then rushed over to the kitchen window to see what Roy was talking about. After he drank his morning cup of coffee with French Vanilla Creamer (by the way it's only the liquid creamer), he was ready to conquer the mountainside on his morning run. He expected a quick chill to hit him in the face when he opened the door, but it was actually a little warm. After he finished his morning run, he showered and ate breakfast with the guys. After breakfast, Roy and the guys sat at the kitchen table joking around. In between his training sessions, he rested up and did a couple of interviews. Roy's next training session started up at 5pm. He worked on his normal routine of speed, power, endurance, agility and balance....

Thursday, October 16, 2008
Roy's morning started out with him grabbing his coffee and heading to the gym. However, he got caught in traffic jam from an accident. 24/7 followed Roy around in the gym getting footage for their show. Roy did his morning cardio, switching between 2 cardio machines at different levels. After this, he moved into the weight room to do weights and abdominals, and then he was done with another training session. On his way back to camp, Roy stopped to get gas and as soon as he stepped out of the car, he felt the cool air begin to blow. He knew his warm weather was leaving just like the forecast had said, but this time he knew it was for good. He noticed the leaves were beginning to pile up in the yards as he drove down the street. He had his morning breakfast, but he changed things. He had a bowl of shredded wheat cereal, rice dream milk and chopped up sausage in the bowl. He enjoyed the change. Roy then played video games on the computer. One of his favorite games to play is called Bejeweled 2. After this, Roy did a conference call with the British and then he spoke with Dan Rafael from ESPN. He took a nap and got ready for sparring. Roy watched his fellow boxers spar and then he sparred. After he sparred, Roy and they guys sat around discussing their sparring sessions with one another. 24/7 had a section set up to interview Roy after his training. Roy showered and then got ready to settle in for the night...

Friday, October 17, 2008
Thursday Night, Roy laid in bed and thought about what would occur over the next few days. Now that the fight is starting to get closer, he has to adjust his schedule to attend certain events to promote his fight and his company Square Ring. On Saturday, he has to attend a local autograph signing at Complete Fitness (the fitness center he does his morning training) and then he is going to attend the Pavlick/Hopkins fight in Atlantic City. He also thinks about the things he accomplished during sparring today and the task he wants to accomplish during his next sparring session on Monday. He has all of his training session planned out before he goes into them on what he wants accomplished, and he doesn't finish training until they are accomplished. As the morning came about, he was on his normal routine: a morning cup of coffee and creamer for his drive to the gym, he trained (cardio and weights) and then back to eat breakfast. Occasionally after breakfast and a shower, he will go down to the local Horse Track, "The Meadowlands," in Washington, PA and place a few bets on a couple of different horse races and today was one of those days. After this, he did some interviews for 24/7 and then he rested up for his 5pm training session. He worked on his hand speed, endurance and agility. All the guys ate Coach Merckerson's dinner and then settled in for the night.

Saturday,October 18, 2008
Today was Saturday and Roy and Keiyon got up early and ran the steep mountain road at camp. The weather had a chill to it this morning. After he ran, his day was in full force. He had to do an autograph signing show at Complete Fitness in the West Mifflin area and after this he went straight to the airport to catch a flight to go to the Pavlik/Hopkins Fight.

Sunday, October 19, 2008
It's Sunday and Roy is going to take today off. He returned from Atlantic City and he's going to catch up on his rest and watch the NFL...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Today started with Roy enjoying his morning cup of coffee with french vanilla creamer, sitting by the old wood stove in the gym. He knows winter is here to stay. Before the guys go to bed at night, Buzzy (the camp owner) stops by the camp and places some firewood in the burning stove to take the chill out of the air. As Roy's coffee kicks in, he gets dressed and hits the mountain for his morning run. The breeze hits his face as soon as he opens the door. After his run, he ate a light breakfast, showered and rested up for a earlier training session. He's switching things up on his body today. At 1:30pm, he started his training session. He incorporated numerous drills for balance, endurance and speed.

Thursday, October 23, 2008
Roy was up before the alarm went off, thinking of what he wanted to get accomplished today. He looked out his window and it was still dark, but the sun was starting to rise over the hillside. There was light frost on the ground. He started the day by running the mountain again. After this, he ate a light breakfast and then rested for a while. Later during the day he did a couple of interviews, and then he stopped by the Meadowlands Horse Track to place a few bets. He sparred at 6pm. He worked on all the things he had wanted to get accomplished. Roy always has time for the kids. He allowed a couple of young men from the City of Clairton go one round a piece with him towards the end of training. After he finished sparring he worked the mitts with Alfy. He finished the night watching the Auburn/West Virginia Game and also playing one of his favorite video games, Bejeweled. He will head to the Fitness Gym early in the morning.

Friday, October 24, 2008
Friday morning started at 7am for Roy. The weather forecast called for rain later in the day. There was a light chill in the air. He started his day with his typical morning cup of coffee and some creme burlee creamer for the drive. He had a hard workout coming on, in a short time frame to finish. Roy heads back to Florida on a 2pm flight today, for his last overnight visit with his kids before the fight. He was headed to Complete Fitness, where he did weights and his morning cardio. After this workout, he took a 2 hour break and started up his second workout for the day. During his 2-hour break, he thought about the Clairton Bears (the local high school football team he supports with his visits on Friday Night games) and their big game tonight that he couldn't attend. So, in his place he sent the kids sandwiches and chips to eat (because the kids didn't have school today), from him when they arrived at the stadium. He also sent them a message saying he was going home this weekend, but they would see him next Friday Night for their first weekend of playoff games. During his second workout he did the jump rope, speed bag, mitts and shadow boxing. After this, he and the other guys showered and headed for the airport. Roy is going to take Saturday and Sunday off from training. While he is at home, he will spend time with his children and The City of Pensacola will be holding a rally on the beach for him Saturday. He will depart from Pensacola on Sunday and return to Pittsburgh, with his normal training on Monday morning.

HBO’s all-access reality series, “Calzaghe/Jones 24/7”, returns with an all new episode this Sunday, Nov. 2 at 8:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. ET/PT. Episode one can be seen on HBO ON DEMAND.

The Calzaghe vs. Jones pay-per-view telecast, beginning at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT, will be produced and distributed by HBO Pay-Per-View and will be available to more than 71 million pay-per-view homes. The telecast will be available in HD-TV for those viewers who can receive HD. HBO Pay-Per-View is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry. For Calzaghe vs. Jones fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.

Article posted on 04.11.2008



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