"The Sting" vs "The Hitman"
In response to a question asked on Twitter about whether he would fight rival Nathan Heaney (12-0, 4KOs), unbeaten middleweight prospect Bradley Rea (10-0, 4KOs) replied: "I would fight him tomorrow and they know that; ball is in his court."
He added, "Obviously I would back myself, but I know it’s a great fight, good clash of styles and definitely one for the fans to enjoy."
The 'Hitman' Heaney was only just in action last month (June 5, 2020) on the undercard of Daniel Dubois' return against Bogdan Dinu. The 32-year-old Stoke City FC fan KO'd overmatched Bulgarian Iliyan Markov (6-15-2, 3KOs) with a right hook to the body in round three of a scheduled 10.
A former IBO Continental and Midlands Area champion, Heaney has experienced 72 rounds over 12 bouts, considerably more than Rea, who has banked just 33 rounds over 10 contests so far.
Nine years his junior, 23-year-old Rea, from Stretford, hasn't been past six rounds yet, whereas Heaney has been the 10-round distance four times. 'The Sting' is currently on a demolition spree having stoped four of his last six opponents. In his last outing, he blasted unbeaten Lee Cutler away in the opening round of their fight in March on the undercard of Okolie's world title glory against Glowacki.
The rivals have a shared opponent in Darryl Sharp. Nathan Heaney kicked off his pro career with a 40-36 points win over the former Midlands Area champion and Bradley Rea won all six rounds at 60-54.