By Dennis Dodge – Well unless a lot of stuff has passed me by then it’s been a quiet month for Dec/Jan, with the Chrimbo period and the New Year, boxings have taken a back burner and everyone is quite rightly recharging their batteries ready to start all over again. Doesn’t mean I’ve got nothing to moan about, there are a few things I need to get off my chest.
First off why is there very few shows around in January, surely there could be some huge bouts tied into new years celebrations or some such, I know it means the athletes themselves have to have a period of no indulgence, BUT if it’s big enough then they get paid enough, although why ITV and Ch 5 couldn’t do an end of year special for the boxing they’ve hosted I don’t know, build up the fan base a bit and get people salivating for what could happen next year (either that or I missed it as I don’t watch a lot of telly or go on the web much over that period).
Steve Bunce, whilst not my favourite pundit has got a cracking little book out called the big fat short history of British Boxing, it’s an excellent read but has really brought to the forefront some of the forgotten names around the UK, it’s also shined a teeny tiny spotlight on the difference between boxing then and now. Somebody needs to pick this up more and point a massive spotlight (like as big as the sun) onto the crap things we fans hold dear now such as the ‘undefeated’ the padded-out records and the fact we dismiss people because of a loss, if that had happened back then there’d never have been such a sport and half the names we hold dear would never have been heard of.
I also read Journeymen by Mark Turley and what a book that is, there’s a lot of information in there that most of you may not know (but probably suspected) and really brings a whole new spotlight on the skills that these so-called ‘losers’ actually possess, these guys (and gals) really need to be shown a lot more respect, not just by the fans but by the board and the promoters. It pissed me off way more than it should to read that a couple of these lads had lost money because they had the audacity to beat certain opponents that were not up to their skill level. (seriously, go and read it if I had my way you wouldn’t be allowed to comment on any aspect of these unsung pros of the sport without doing so.)
If any of you out there have the opportunity to set it up or can get any of the big 3 to set it up then we should have some sort of prize-fighter for these fella’s. I know it’s fallen out of favour lately but the format could really work for them and give those coming to the end of their careers something to look back on. I’m not saying it would be an automatic success but I’m pretty sure most of us would rather watch that than another show that you know 95 percent of the home fighters are going to walk it. (I know I know before I get a bollocking, it takes a lot of money to set these tournaments up and isn’t as easy as it sounds for the smaller promoter.)
Oh, also someone who writes better than me (and there’s a few of you) needs to get in touch with some of these guys to get their history down in black and white, we all love good behind the scenes stories and if Journeymen is anything to go by there’s a hell of a lot more out there.
But what’s really really annoyed me this month is for about the 4th article running on bits and bobs around the local boxing scene, I keep forgetting to thank John Donaghy for all the work he puts in with some of the lads, so to Jon. A massive thank you as well for all the work you do at your gaff in Preston.
Roll on February when there are some cracking bouts (locally anyway) coming up, keep an eye out for my previews on it.