He’s been waiting a little longer than he would’ve liked, but on September 23, Ashley “The Beast” Reece will make his long awaited return to the ACB cage.
The British welterweight was last seen in action back at ACB 54: Supersonic when he defeated James Lewis and took his record to 5-0. Having got the second round finish in impressive fashion, Reece was then expected to fight Mick Bowman on the ACB 63 fight card in Gdansk but the bout fell through.
Thankfully, Reece now his next fight announced and he will take on Sam Boult at ACB 68 in Sheffield on September 23. Speaking earlier this week to MMAUNO.com, Reece explained how the fight with Boult came about.
ICYMI – Boult vs Reece set for #ACB70
— ACB Fighting League (@ACB_League) July 31, 2017
“I still have to fight Bowman, but this time I was also offered the chance to fight Boult and I thought I’d fight him first because he’s got the better record,” Reece said. “It wasn’t any more complicated than that really. I saw him fight the week before on the last ACB Sheffield and I thought I’d like to fight him.
“I don’t think you can really take anything from just seeing someone fight because it’s different being in there with someone. I can take bits and bobs off people, but you can never really determine what they’re like until you fight them. Some people look average on the eye, but then you fight them and it’s different.”
Despite having to wait a little longer than he would’ve liked for his next fight, Reece does see there are some positives from being out of the firing line. The Englishman has used his time to further hone his skills and he feels he’s going to be a much better fighter by the time he steps in the cage again next month.
“Although I didn’t get to fight in July, I still kept my training up,” Reece said. “It’s given me longer to work on things and I’ve just been carrying on with it all. It’s given me a chance to fine tune things, but it’s not like I want months and months off between fights.
“I want to fight more than once a year, but if I’m given the extra time off it doesn’t matter to me too much. It’s good to fight as often as you can, but sometimes I can see the benefit of recovering and that.”
Despite his unbeaten amateur and professional record, Reece isn’t taking any ‘easy fights’ on his way to the top. The Englishman insists on pushing himself each and every fight and isn’t a proponent of padding his record.
“I’m just trying to win the hard fights,” Reece said. “I want to take things at the right pace and the right time, but I don’t want easy fights because I don’t see the point in them. Some people have like 15 fights, but really they’ve only faced two or three real quality fighters.
— 'The Beast' Reece (@ashleyreece88) July 22, 2017
“I don’t just want to get in there and get rounds in against anyone. For instance, for this upcoming fight, I was offered Bowman who’s 10-5 or Boult who’s 8-1. I said I’d have Boult because he’s the harder fight with a better record. I’ll always go for the tougher fight on paper.”
The fight with Boult now has Reece’s full attention and he’s already ramping up his training ahead of fight night. He’s expecting a tough fight come September 23, but he believes he’s going to be ready for everything that Boult brings to the table.
“He’s good everywhere from what I’ve seen,” Reece said. “He’s a good grappler, his striking isn’t bad and I’m expecting him to want to take it everywhere. I’m expecting it to be a bit of a mad fight with plenty of scrambles and loads of combinations.
“One thing for sure is I want a finish, 100-percent.”