Queenstown’s Thriller in the Chiller contenders have been sharpening their skills with some pad work in the final week of training.
The 18 contenders step into the ring at the Events Centre on Saturday night in front of a sell-out crowd.
Thriller in the Chiller boxer Richard Shipley hopes it’ll be second time lucky.
Shipley, who lost to Gary Cochrane last year, says the defeat was a good incentive to enter this Saturday’s sell-out event.
Despite what others might think, he says doing it last year doesn’t give him an advantage.
After suffering an injury in the summer he’s had to train hard to get back in form.
This year’s focus has been on technique as much as fitness levels and Shipley reckons the entire camp is stronger this year.
Shipley, who will take on Ireland’s Padraig ‘Paddy’ Hanley, says he’s excited but wary.
“If I stay out of the way of Paddy’s right hand I’ll be okay. He’s a hard punch and he definitely is one of the better boxers in the competition.”
He says he’ll be nervous but is confident he’s ready.
Organiser Simon Green says it’s been great having Shipley back in the camp.
He says the 31-year-old has coached his fellow competitors on what to expect.
“He’s led the way in terms of pushing himself as hard as he can throughout the camp and showing everyone else what is required.”
It’s hard finding match-ups for someone who has done it before, Green says.
Hanley has a little experience and this has evened things up, he says.
Green reckons it’ll be one of the fights of the night.
Thriller isn’t all about the punches.
Now in its sixth year, the event has raised more than $100,000 for local charities.
The 2015 tournament will raise money for the Bruce Grant Youth Trust and the Branches Charitable Trust.
Boxers have already raised over $7500 - but the aim is $50,000.
Green is donating 10 per cent of the box office and local businesses have gifted auction items.