By Sarah Green for The Toowoomba Telegraph.
BRAYD Smith ducked under the middle rope to enter the boxing ring at Smithy's Gym and began unleashing a barrage of uppercuts and jabs.
It has been three months since Smith fractured his right hand in three places midway through his last fight.
In a testament to the toughness of the Toowoomba pugilist, he continued to five rounds and won in a unanimous points decision to secure his fifth pro victory against Phisanuthep Chaiyonggym to remain undefeated in his professional career.
Brayd "The Great White" Smith will step in the ring against Japanese boxer Shogo Sakai for the vacant WBF Asia Pacific youth feather-weight title at Rumors International on Friday.
The gym has always been Brayd's refuge but never more so than after his hand injury. Even in a cast he was there doing drills, focusing on being the fittest he could be. The fractures have healed but Smith will head into the match with ligament damage on the same hand. "It is just as painful," he said. "In this training camp I am pre-paring myself mentally. I have to come to terms that it is going to hurt."
Both fighters will face the bout with high confidence as Sakai comes off two knockout victories in the second and third round, while Smith has five straight wins, four by knockout to his name.
"It has been a tough 12 weeks, but that is good, the only person who is going to pay for that is Shogo on the night," Smith said.
"I can't wait to get in the ring." As well as fighting for the professional title, the law student will have an opportunity to showcase his skills against an opponent with the same level of experience. "This is an even match," manager and trainer Brendon Smith said. "Shogo is only two years older than Brayd so it will be great for him to test the level he is at against someone of similar age and experience".
Brayd's title fight will headline the "Smithy Brings the Big Fights 3? card.
Also on the card are local cruiserweights Josh Webb vs Dale Ryan, English import Darren Askew vs Brett John Smith and undefeated prospect Kris George and "Iron" Will Young.
Tickets for the event are currently on sale at Smithy's Gym, Anzac Avenue, Toowoomba.