Chris Jenkins

I have an affinity to the Welsh. My brother lives there, I have a daughter named Cerys after the lead singer of a Welsh band. So it was no surprise that I found Chris Jenkins easy to warm to.

Chris (16-0-0) is due out in the ring on the 18th July in Manchester on the Matchroom card headlined by Ant Crolla fighting for a world title after his horrific attack and Scott Q
uigg defending his title against Kiko Martinez. Jenkins, a former Prizefighter winner, is facing the tricky Tyrone Nurse (31-2-0) for the British light welterweight title. It's the first fight since October for Jenkins, so how comes it's been so long out of the ring for the Welshman?

"I was out against a Polish guy in October who was meant to give me some rounds, but I finished him in the first. Then I had a fight lined up with Tom Stalker but that fell through when he decided to take a different route. I was meant to be out in Manchester before, but then those idiots attacked Crolla, and I was meant to be out in Leeds and again it didn't happen. But in all of that time I've only been out of the gym for three weeks."

So clearly Chris will be in his usual top condition (watch his interview after watching Prizefighter and you would think he was still due to fight!). But would he have preferred a warm up fight before stepping in with Nurse for the British title?

"Yeah I wouldn't have minded to be honest. But this opportunity came along and there was no way I could turn it down. But I'm ready for it, it's not a problem. I've been working like I always do in the gym. I don't think Nurse holds the power that some light welters do. I've made sure Ive sparred with bigger guys too - we've been going 12 hard rounds, sometimes with 2 kids in per session. I've really made sacrifices for this, travelling up to Jamie Sanigar's gym in Bristol every day, I'm ready."

Jenkins has gone on record saying that he is looking to take the frustrations of the last ten months out on Nurse come the 18th - so how does he see the fight going?

"We know he moves around during the first half of the fight. I've made sure I have a couple of game plans for the fight. When Dave Ryan beat Nurse (in October 2014) Ryan scored a couple of flash knock downs. But Nurse boxed well for the fight and was unlucky to lose it in the end. Dave Ryan showed me I have to stay calm and cool, controlled aggression, don't rush into anything."

So if he overcomes Nurse then would he fancy getting in with Ryan?


 
Chris Jenkins
"I would love to fight Dave Ryan! That would be a proper scrap in the centre of the ring." I put it to Chris that his wife, famously supportive and a follower of his career, may not appreciate seeing her husband in an old fashioned tear up? "Oh she would love it!! She loves to come and watch me get into a scrap. It's a relief for her, she puts up with a lot when I'm in camp, it's her opportunity to let go on the night and have a drink - she deserves the break!"

With one recent Welsh world champion being crowned in Lee Selby, who is also training out of Jamie Sanigar's camp, how much of an inspiration is he providing for Jenkins?

"Selby is an inspiration to everyone - not just the boxers but the kids around the area as well. He's not been around the gym much since he won the title but I've seen him a couple of times. He's like me, he came from small hall shows too. He took his opportunity when it came and now I need to make sure I do the same."

This could be the big break for Jenkins. Prizefighter elevated his status in British boxing and launched him to a new audience; "I never had Twitter before prizefighter - now I have fans contacting me from all over the place!"

Win on the 18th of July in Manchester and the chances are that Chris Jenkins will find that his profile, along with his Twitter followers, goes through the roof.

Follow Chris on twitter @ChrisRokn