|‘Tank’ set to get back in the ring|
Guardian Sports Reporter
Published: May 21, 2012
Signing his name on the dotted line in a contract, on Saturday, is something Bahamian heavyweight fighter Sherman ‘The Tank’ Williams wanted to do for quite a while.
It’s been 16 months since Williams last fought, so when he steps into the ring on June 28 in Macau, China, Williams will look to deliver the winning punch and knock out Chauncy ‘Hillyard Hammer’ Welliver. Both the World Boxing Organization’s (WBO) China Zone heavyweight title and the World Boxing Council’s (WBC) Asia Pacific title are on the line in this 12-rounder.
In this Nassau Guardian exclusive, Williams reveals how he was able to “seal the deal” and explains the roller coaster ride he’s been on, in the boxing world.
“This will be my first fight for the year, my return to the ring for 2012,” said Williams. “It is my third scheduled fight, but will mark my first time getting back into the ring. It feels good. I have been back into the gym from December. We were scheduled to fight in January but unfortunately that whole card got postponed. It was rescheduled for March, but then my opponent pulled out.
“I am now moving ahead. It feels good to know that I got a contract and I have signed. This fight is bigger and better than the other two that I was supposed to do this year. It is a high profile fight. It will be in the Macau Casino, live on Asian and European television. I am just excited about the opportunity that this is providing.”
Even though no fight was in sight for Williams, he still continued to train. Now he will have to rely on the sparring matches and numerous training sessions when he goes up against Welliver.
The New Zealand native is said to have an orthodox stance. He is rated number 10, among heavyweight fighters, in the WBO rankings. Welliver’s last fight was in April at the Capitol Plaza Hotel, in Jefferson City, Missouri. The fight with Bert Cooper went the distance and at the end, Welliver was crowned the WBC Continental Americas heavyweight champion.
In January, Welliver stopped Moyoy Mensah in the ninth round. Four titles were on the line in this one, the WBO Asia Pacific, the WBC Asian Boxing Council title, the New Zealand national boxing federation heavyweight title and the interim WBO Oriental heavyweight title. Welliver left with all four. That title fight was the 17th consecutive fight he had won. His winning streak was extended into April and now Welliver can boast about holding a 53-5-5 win/loss/draw record. Of the 53 wins, 20 were knockouts.
As for Williams, the last official bout was with Evander Holyfield in January of 2011. The 12-round fight was stopped in the third and ruled a no-contest. Over the past four years, Williams, a native of Freeport, Grand Bahama, has only stepped into the ring three times. He got a win over Andrew Greeley in 2008, the following year he fell to Manuel Charr, and in 2011 he went up against Holyfield. Right now his win/loss/draw record stands at 34-11-2.
Williams said: “Being a professional fighter I stayed in the gym, even though I didn’t have a match scheduled. It is my job. I am in the gym five or six days a week, that is with or without a scheduled fight. This is how I keep my edge. I am prepared and still have a good world ranking and my reputation with the governing bodies is still intact. I am kind of known by my reputation.
“When I win these WBC and WBO titles I am already guaranteed at least a number five world rating. Vitali Klitschko, he is the current world champion and he is fighting between Ukraine and Germany, so the plan is to get in the best shape I can, and go in as a more dangerous and furious fighter than I did against Holyfield. I am not taking any prisoners, just both titles from Chauncy Welliver. Winning this fight can definitely put me a step closer to my goal which is being the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world. Hopefully I can get either one of the Klitschko brothers by the end of this year.
“My situation and position is simple. I am a tough guy. I come to fight every time. I have power in both hands and most people will never fight me unless it is mandatory, meaning that the organization or governing body has to tell the champion that he needs to fight Sherman Williams in 90 days or else. Once I win this fight and get into the top five I can petition and plead my case. Once I would have won these titles next month, I would be in a very strong position to do that.”