March cannot come soon enough for Wade (The Boogeyman) Ryan as he prepares to face three-time world title challenger Dennis Hogan at the Brisbane Convention Centre on Wednesday, March 3.
The blockbuster clash was announced yesterday at a press conference by the team at No Limit Boxing as the pair face-off in a 12-round International Boxing Organisation (IBO) world title eliminator for the super-welterweight belt.
Ryan has been knocking on the door of the IBO ever since claiming the organisation’s international title in December 2020 where he travelled into enemy territory to beat Troy O’Meley by split decision in Cessnock.
He then went on to beat rising star Koen Mazoudier who many believed had enough to dethrone Gunnedah’s boxing champion. The 10th round technical knockout was Ryan’s first appearance on Australia’s number one boxing promotion, No Limit Boxing and started Ryan’s rise to stardom across the domestic boxing scene.
Ryan continued his hot form in the ring in a rematch with O’Meley who had been calling for the fight ever since his loss eight months prior. O’Meley’s team had doubts over the decision in the first fight, however, Ryan put these doubts to bed, earning a sixth-round stoppage in July last year.
Most recently, The Boogeyman faced Japanese international, Nath Nwachukwu. It was Ryan’s third defence of his IBO international title, claiming a unanimous decision victory with the judges scoring the bout 100-89, 99-90 and 98-91.
The victory at the Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney, showed Ryan’s ability to mix it up with the world’s best and has since seen the fighter globally ranked by Boxrec at 44th in the super-welterweight division. In Australia, he sits one spot behind World Boxing Organisation mandatory challenger, Tim Tszyu in second place.
Following a pad session with trainer David (Spike) Syphers earlier this week, Ryan spoke to the Gunnedah Times, describing his upcoming bout with Hogan as the “biggest fight of his career”.
He added: “Everything has been leading up to this fight and it’s all falling into place.”
“It’s the toughest fight of my career and it just shows that all the hard work is starting to pay dividends.
“Just being able to share the ring with Dennis is pretty cool, he’s fought three times for a world title and they were cracking fights so to get my name thrown around with all these people is just amazing.”
Although Ryan is excited about the match-up, he understands the gravity of fighting with the number one ranked super-welterweight in Ireland.
The countless pad sessions and sparring rounds in Gunnedah and Sydney is helping The Boogeyman in preparation for Hogan who many believe has an awkward boxing style.
“I have to be smart, our preparation is well underway but everything is coming along well,” Ryan said.
“We have a few more hard weeks left of training and everything has to be tip-top but it is slowly coming together.
“Come fight night, we’ll be ready to go and we’ll have to be sharp and smart. We’re both coming off wins in November and we’ll both be prepared for a good hard fight.”
In Hogan’s last four bouts, he has faced Jamie Munguia and Jermall Charlo, each for a world title in 2019. After a short break due to the pandemic, he went on to fight a further two times last year with bouts against Tszyu and Tommy Browne.
While he could only manage a record of 1-3, it shows the calibre of boxers Hogan has faced and the quality Ryan needs to bring for his hand to be raised on March 3.
With the fight taking place in Brisbane, Hogan who has fought out of Queensland for the entirety of his professional career, will be viewed as the home boxer, meaning Ryan will be travelling once again into enemy territory.
“We’re going into his backyard or his home state as such, but we’re only focusing on what we’re doing,” Ryan said.
“This is nothing new, we’ve done it before.”
In yesterday’s No Limit press conference in Brisbane, Hogan spoke to media about Ryan’s recent form.
“Wade’s done exceptionally well in the last four fights,” Hogan said.
“He’s back on a winning trajectory and a nice winning streak always boosts your confidence. Momentum is a massive thing in boxing.
“He’s going to be at the best he can be in his career.
“This presents a good challenge for me but I have been training hard and I do believe this fight will be mine.”
Ryan and Hogan will be joined on the card by Tszyu’s brother Nikita who is making his professional debut following a hiatus away from the sport. He wil lace up the gloves against undefeated 2-0-1 boxer Aaron Stahl.
Brisbane local Liam Wilson also features on the night and will be looking to avenge his TKO loss to Joe Noynay in July last year.
Toowoomba native Steve Spark makes a return to the ring as well, following his TKO loss to Tim Tszyu in July. He is now preparing to face undefeated 1-0 boxer River Diaz. More announcements will be made in the coming weeks.