HE may be the ‘Pretty Boy’ of boxing but Hatfield bantamweight Connor Nixon is out to prove there is more to his arsenal than just good looks when he makes his professional debut at the Dome tomorrow night.
The 18-year-old was lumbered with the ‘Pretty Boy’ monicker when he walked through the doors of the Empress gym in Mexborough.
But the tag is mere window dressing, with the story of a decorated young amateur turned highly promising professional hidden behind it.
Nixon is a former England international amateur with several national titles under his belt and one of the best young amateur boxers to come out of Doncaster.
And he cannot wait to get his professional career under way.
He told the Free Press: “I can’t wait to get started.
“I’m up and down with how I feel about Friday night, going from excited, to nervous, to scared.
“But I’m really looking forward to getting in there.”
Former Junior ABA, Boys’ Clubs and Tri Nations champion Nixon admits it was difficult to turn his back on the amateur side of the sport but felt the time was right.
He said: “My trainer Eric Walker died a few months ago and with the Olympics next year too close and the one after that so far away, it seemed the best thing for me.
“It’s been great, different from what I’m used to but really good.
“There’s a group of us all from the same village in the gym with Gavin and Jamie McDonnell and Charlie Thompson, so we’ve got that competition.”
A lot of expectation and hype has been put on Nixon due to his glittering junior amateur career.
But the level-headed fighter is keeping his feet on the ground.
He said: “I’m aware of what’s been said about me but I know I’ve got a lot of hard work to do to reach the levels people say I can reach.
“I’m just going to take each fight one at a time and see where I go.”
Nixon looks set to make his debut against tricky journeyman Delroy Spencer over four three minute rounds tomorrow night.
Nixon describes his style as ‘all about speed and movement’ – something which has reportedly astounded gymmates and onlookers in training.
He said: “I’ve not got a lot of power to be honest but my hands and feet are fast.”
Trainer Stefy Bull was delighted when Nixon opted to turn pro in his gym and is excited about what the young fighter can do in the future.
He said: “We’re really confident Connor can do brilliant things in boxing.
“I definitely think he can follow in Jamie McDonnell’s footsteps and go as far as Jamie has.
“It’s no exaggeration when I say Connor’s got the best footwork and fastest hands I’ve seen for someone as young as him.
“I’ve been in the ring with Amir Khan and I’d say Connor’s hands are as fast as his.”