It will be pastures new for Michael Simpson when he steps into the ring at a charity boxing event this weekend.

Fellow Te Puke Young Farmer Lindsay Williams has at least ploughed the furrow before.

The pair will represent the local club at the fifth biannual Waikato/Bay of Plenty Young Farmers' Club Fight Night in Cambridge on Saturday.

Williams took part in the last event two years ago.


"I won that fight and that was good," he says "It was six minutes — three rounds of two minutes — and I wanted to do it again."

When he first put his name forward for the 2018 fight night, he thought he was the only one from the Te Puke club, but later found out that Simpson had put his name in the ring too.

"I wanted to get back into it and do it again because it's a lot of fun and with calving coming up it keeps you nice and fit."

As the night gets closer, Simpson has had moments wondering whether he was as keen to do it as he first thought.

"Once my name was in there, they had another guy within my weight class and no one to fight him, so I thought I may as well."

Farming is a physically demanding job, giving Williams and Simpson reasonable fitness levels, although there is a relative lull in activity during early winter.

"This is the time of year when you can pack on the weight, but training's pretty enjoyable, especially at a quiet time like this. You can cruise down after work and train for an hour or so. We're training five or six times a week," says Simpson.

He has lost 15kg since he started training and will fight in the 92kg-plus weight division with Williams in the 75kg division.


They have both been training with Kevin Elder at QI Health and Fitness in Welcome Bay.

"He runs three boxing classes a week and I go to those and I do two personal trainings with him as well," says Simpson.

"We've done a lot of sparring and technical stuff as well as fitness."

Having experienced the fight night once, Williams is well aware of what to expect — and mental strength is equally as important as physical strength.

"I went in [the ring] and I had no doubts [about winning]. You don't let [losing] run through your mind."

Neither boxer has thought about the night itself, although Williams recalls the build up to his last fight.

He says the pressure mounts as the earlier bouts finish.

"When you walk out in front of all those people and the lights are on you, you don't know what to do, but you've just got to put it out of your mind and keep a smile on your face and don't worry about it."

He says the adrenaline was flowing in the first round, had subsided a little in the second and the third round he "just give it my all".

Simpson says that as fight night draws closer he is getting less nervous and more excited.

"You've put the effort in, and you just want it all to come out positive."

Simpson moved to the area from Whakatāne last year and is working on a farm in Pongakawa while Williams has been on a farm in Paengaroa for about four years.