BOXER ‘Vicious’ Vivian Harris says the shackles are off and he is ready to cut loose against Blackpool’s Brian Roase on Friday week.
The 34-year-old from Guyana takes on the British light-middleweight champion on Rose’s own turf, the Winter Gardens, and insists he is going into the contest with a weight off his mind.
Former WBA world light-welterweight champion Harris goes into the star-studded Blackpool show on a losing run but is adamant that his biggest adversary in the past has been the scales.
USA-based Harris said: “Fighting at light-middleweight won’t be a problem for me. I should have fought there from when I lost my belt because I walk around at 170lbs. I was always a big light-welter.
“I have won only one of my last eight fights (including a draw and a ‘no contest’), but in four of those I couldn’t make light-welter anymore.”
After postponing his title defence against Londoner Sam Webb, initially scheduled for Liverpool on October 13, Rose is stepping into the unknown against Harris on a bill featuring the cream of Fylde coast boxing talent.
With just one defeat in 22 contests, the younger and bigger Rose will enter the ring a firm favourite but Harris can punch and has recorded 19 of his 29 wins inside the distance.
The knowledge that his career is at a crossroads also makes Harris more dangerous. After 15 years in the pro game, another defeat will leave his future options very limited.
He said of Rose: “I know what I see on the tape and I don’t think anything of him, just a fighter working to get to the top.
“It’s very important that I beat Brian Rose and I’m very confident. I love fighting in England and can’t wait to get over there. They are great boxing fans there.”
His manager thomas Hickey said: “I have known Vivian since he was 17, discovering him in the Colorado amateurs. Vivian is more determined than ever to become a world champion again at his more natural weight.”
Sharing the spotlight on Friday will be three of the Fylde coast’s rising boxing stars, cruiserweight Matty Askin, and undefeated prospects Adam Little and Scott Cardle.
Also appearing on the bill will be unbeaten Liverpool prospect James ‘Jazza’ Dickens, and crowd favourite Jeff Thomas from Lytham. Set to make their professional debuts in Blackpool are Steve Lewis, Issac Lowe, Scott Moonan and Lee Crossland.
Tickets priced £35, £40.00 (balcony) and £70 (ringside) are still available from all boxers (balcony seats from the venue only) or at www.vipbe.co.uk