By Ben Blackwell – Seacroft based super-middleweight,Sean Hare (3-1-1), is to many on the Leeds boxing circuit one of the more colourful characters upon a growing stable of Leeds based fighters. If you mention Leeds and boxing, many will automatically think of Josh Warrington, the famous Manners family and others. Sean is one of those fighters who is wanting to make up for some lost time after a testing and difficult period of which has seen injury keep him from the ring for almost two years. A previously talented amateur with regional and national titles to his name. Sean is a product of the famous Burmantofts ABC in the heart of the LS9 postcode within the city. Sean didn’t shy away from how this has affected him.
“I didn’t realise at first how much boxing does mean to me. I was laid at home after a car accident, shoulder dislocated and unable to do the things I took for granted. It was a testing period and that’s why i haven’t been out since March of 2018. It did allow me to reflect on what I have achieved so far both as an amateur and professional. I know I have a lot left in me and am now feeling fresh after the layoff and I’m grateful of realising of what I have and in a fortunate position to have the ability to box.
“I have been guilty of cutting corners, taking risks and not doing things properly as a professional. I know I need to make changes and I have made them already. I have got a new trainer in Derek Roche. Derek is a former British welterweight champion and a three-time world title challenger and a good coach in his own right too. I have to work during the day time so training with Mark (Bateson) and the lads there at Burmantofts simply couldn’t be done. Derek also gives me that one-to-one training which i need to help me progress. Mark understood that and he is still my manager and promoter so he still is a prominent and important figure in my career.”
Sean will finally make his ring return on the 3rd of April at the Elland Road Pavillion in Leeds and couldn’t hide his excitement at the prospect of returning to the ring.
“I’m buzzing to get back in there and my tickets have been flying out already which has kept me on my toes whilst I’m out on my runs doing some ticket drops. I’m no idiot and i know i have still got six, seven weeks of hard graft to get on with, training with Derek. We already have a great relationship and he has a great mind not just boxing wise but in general. He knows when I’m blowing and struggling and will taper things down or just sends me home because he knows the struggle of boxing and working at the same time. To some, that will seem strange but boxer after boxer who has to work and train at night knows what i mean. It is hard and something which i want to change in future with success.”
Derek of whom is a reserved gentleman at first and softly spoken with his Irish accent spoke of what he see’s in Sean.
“Sean is a very very hardworking boxer who is wanting to improve. That is what i want from any fighter i deal with, work hard and most importantly work efficiently. I know from my own career (29-5) the mistakes i made and that boiled down to discipline. I let myself go in-between fights and was focusing on getting my weight down instead of improving as a fighter. I know Sean has been guilty of those mistakes just like me so i know the struggle. Sean is still a young lad in my view at 28 so he can still get the weight off quickly but it will get harder for him. He knows that and we have agreed if we are going to do this working together thing that it has to be serious. We have been working together for three weeks now and he has done everything i have asked for him and done it well. Not everything i have asked has been easy and it has pushed him but he did it so i cannot complain, i know i have something i can work with.
“As you know (in reference to me) and people in the game in these parts (in reference to Leeds) know that Sean is very good. It’s up to Sean in how much he wants to achieve”
Derek underlined some of the things he wants Sean to improve on.
“Sean still has very bouncy feet, it is still in the amateur style of boxing but it has been bred into him due to his amateur career. So i need him to slow his feet down so he can think about what he is doing. There is little point having rapid feet if you are just going to waste punches, anyone can do that. So if he can slow his feet and think and see what he can land with, then throw and move effectively. Physically speaking, Sean, is very fit and got a great engine. There is some things to work on with some proper strength and conditioning as his core strength is not up to scratch yet but that will come. We have plenty of time to get that sorted and prepared.”
Ultimately both men realise they are in this sport to win titles. That is the whole point of prizefighting, big titles and big money. Sean set’s out what he wants over the next twelve months ahead and further ahead.
“Firstly, i need to get a lot more active. That is the most important to me at this moment in time as i have that fire back in my belly. My promoter is having a good number of shows as always this year and i want to be out for at least four of them touch wood. It will give me something to aim for in just having run-out after run out and get some proper momentum in my career. I know also that i need to get down to super-middleweight because light-heavyweight is simply too big. The boxing part was no problem but it’s the physicality and i just couldn’t compete, i was simply too small. Derek agrees along with Mark and we are going down gradually in weight.
“Maybe in twelve month’s or so i can get in the picture for the central area, which is currently held by Christian Kinsiona of Sheffield. He is someone who i can see myself fighting in future but he is well ahead of me right now and boxing for an English title eliminator against Mikey Ellison. Any opportunity i know has to be earned and that is what I’m going to have to do and actually I’m looking forward to proving a few critics wrong.
“Another goal for me is to box on a big bill in Leeds. Especially with Eddie Hearn back in town considering i was injured during almost all of the time when Frank Warren was promoting Josh (Warrington). So that is something which i want to do is to box at the First Direct Arena or at Headingley Stadium. Jack Bateson has done that at Elland Road and the FD Arena so that is something else i can work towards. I know my ticket sales are quite strong so selfishly that can put me closer to that ambition of appearing on these upcoming bills rumoured to take place in the city.”
Derek was also in positive moods regarding the next twelve months and what he want’s Sean to succeed at.
“Sean has got titles in him no question, he is a good fighter and as i said previously i need him to be active and disciplined. So we want to get this first fight out the way and then we can get to real work. I personally feel that he can get to area title contention quickly with how good he can be and with the current crop at area level progressing upwards so there is plenty of space for Sean. Then who knows i think in good time and not right away he can get himself internationally ranked if he keeps on improving at the rate of knots so international titles i wouldn’t rule out in future. The 3rd of April is the most important objective right now and that is to win and win well. He needs to realise that all of this can be achieved if he keeps his head together, focused and disciplined, he can go a long way i think.”
The last word was left to Sean, who was in a thankful mood to people who have already bought tickets for April the 3rd.
“I’m grateful to have great support as always and tickets have been flying already and will have a good number of supporters coming down. It’s them who allow me to do what i do and allow me to box in my city so I’m most grateful to everyone who has bought a ticket and who are wishing me good luck with their hard-earned money. I will never take their support for granted and want to repay their faith in me along with Mark Bateson and Derek who want me to do this. So, everyone, I thank you.”
Sean would like to thank the following sponsors. AllTech Door Systems LTD, Zoo Sport and Mist3windows.