Pride: In The Ring

In the last of my boxing-related posts for the moment, I’m going to show you some action shots from Wolverhampton Civic Hall earlier this month where three of Priory Park ABC‘s boxers (Luke Paddock, Ricky Summers and Ryan “Tank” Aston) fought – and won – their bouts.

Luke Paddock

Luke Paddock

Luke Paddock

Luke Paddock

Ricky Summers is in the ring!

Ricky Summers is in the ring!

I’m sure I’ve said this before but boxing is never an easy thing to photograph: the boxers’ main intention is to move quickly and keep their faces covered as much as possible. A sports photography company I used to shoot for used to insist that a face was at least visible in all shots. At this particular venue, the light comes only from high above so when shooting upwards from ringside there’s the added complication that the hunched boxers’ faces are usually in strong shadow. The light levels here are also generally quite low and so to achieve 1/500s shutter speeds, you’ll need at least 3200 ISO much of the time even on a fast lens.

Ricky Summers in action

Ricky Summers in action

Ricky Summers gets a pep talk from trainer Paul Gough

Ricky Summers gets a pep talk from trainer Paul Gough

Ryan "Tank" Aston has his opponent on the ropes.

Ryan “Tank” Aston has his opponent on the ropes.

Let's face it, you really wouldn't want to get in the ring with Ryan Aston.

Let’s face it, you really wouldn’t want to get in the ring with Ryan Aston.

 

Waiting for a decision. Eventually, Ryan's opponent was declared unable to continue.

Waiting for a decision. Eventually, Ryan’s opponent was declared unable to continue.

I could have filled this page many times over with images from each of the bouts but hopefully these give you a bit of a flavour of the evening.

A Little More Pride…

Following on from the last post about Priory Park ABC‘s leading fighters at Wolverhampton Civic Hall earlier this month, here are a few more backstage shots, this time mainly showing Ryan “Tank” Aston as he prepares for what was to be become his first title-winning fight…

Ryan "Tank" aston prepares for battle.

Ryan “Tank” aston prepares for battle.

A few words from the ref.

A few words from the ref.

Trainer Paul Gough and Ryan Aston.

Trainer Paul Gough and Ryan Aston.

The "cuts mon" adds the finishing touches.

The “cuts mon” adds the finishing touches.

Last minute advice from trainer Paul Gough.

Last minute advice from trainer Paul Gough.

In my next post, I’ll show you some shots from the fights themselves. Again, many thanks to Paul and the lads and lasses from Priory Park ABC for their co-operation.

Pride Of The Black Country: The Story Continues…

When I was working towards my photography degree a few years back I began a documentary project (my first) about my local boxing club – Priory Park ABC in Dudley. I’ve been photographing the club (named “the Pride of the Black Country” by one boxing MC), their fighters and their events ever since. Earlier this month I again photographed Priory Park’s brightest stars at Wolverhampton’s Civic Hall, including Luke Paddock, Ricky Summers and, fighting for his first title belt – Ryan “Tank” Aston.

In my next few posts I’m going to show you some of my images from the Wolverhampton show. I’m fortunate to have been invited once again to photograph the backstage scenes too and this is more in keeping with the rest of my “Pride…” project. I’ll start with the backstage stuff (or some of it – more in the next post) and then some of the action as photographed from ringside.

Trainer Paul Gough not succumbing to the pressure.

Trainer Paul Gough not succumbing to the pressure.

"Tank" relaxes before his title fight.

“Tank” relaxes before his title fight.

Luke Paddock being prepared by the "best cuts man in the business".

Luke Paddock being prepared by the “best cuts man in the business”.

Luke Paddock collects his thoughts before his (winning) fight.

Luke Paddock collects his thoughts before his (winning) fight.

Warming up. Luke Paddock.

Warming up. Luke Paddock.

Luke Paddock being bandaged by Paul Gough.

Luke Paddock being bandaged by Paul Gough.

 

And in case you’re wondering, all three Priory Park fighters won their bouts…

The Express & Star’s coverage of the event… http://www.expressandstar.com/sport/other-sport/boxing/2013/07/08/ryan-aston-retires-harry-matthews-for-first-title/

Ricky dedicated his fight to his mother’s memory – more here – http://www.expressandstar.com/sport/other-sport/boxing/2013/07/03/ricky-summers-dedicates-fight-to-mums-memory/

And Priory Park’s website – http://www.prioryparkboxing.co.uk/