Why Ritson can grow stronger after his rst taste of defeat
Derry Mathews says how to come back
IT’S hard, it is very hard to lose at home. But at the same time it’s a learning point in your career. You always learn to find out who your real friends are. The people who brought tickets, I class them as friends, and it’s about seeing who’s has that loyalty to you. But, at the same time, it’s a devastating position to be in because you want to win. I can’t speak on behalf of anyone else but I’m one of them lads who gets on with it. If I got beat I got on with it.
At the end of the day I’ve got kids and I’ve got a family and they’re healthy, so I count myself a lucky man. But you get other fighters who go into a shell after they lose, they go into hiding as I call it. But what’s there to be ashamed of? You’ve been beaten by a better man, you’ve boxed in front of thousands in your home city. Get on with it. But then, no one likes losing.
My first loss was horrible. It was a horrible, horrible defeat. I got beat by Choi Tseveenpurev. I got knocked out. But at the same time, I did the same thing I did after every fight- I got a Chinese with my mates and had a few beers with them. I didn’t hide away.
I also went and spent some time with my family and that’s what I’ve always done. My plan after I boxed was always making sure I had a pint in my hand the next day. I thanked the people that bought tickets to watch me fight. For me, being a Liverpool man and being a Scouser, like being a Geordie, winning in front of the Newcastle fans, there would be no better feeling and any fighter that tells you there is, is lying. Everyone going mad for you, everyone singing and calling your name, that’s what you want.
You want your family and your kids to be proud of you, and I’m sure Lewis Ritson will get his day where he has them big nights. He’s a special, special fighter for me. If I was Ritson I would go back home, have a month off, and then want to fight again right away. He needs to go back and have a think. I’m not saying anything went wrong in camp, but if it did, then you address it, anything, even your sleeping pattern.
But if anything hasn’t gone wrong, and you’ve just been beaten by a better man than you need to go back to the same plan and that’s to win belts. I was one of those fighters who has come from nothing, apart from being in the best amateur club in the world which is the Solly [Salisbury ABC]. Every fighter in there was as good as each other, but even if I boxed on a club show growing up, I would always have a lot of people come and watch me. I’ve come from good stock, and I was used to that attention.
It’s a hard one for Lewis, because only he’ll know the pressure he was feeling. You never know, he might need a sports psychologist where they get the positives. There are a lot of fighters who say they don’t have them, but they do, and you can go and see someone and they get the confidence out of you so you can feel good fighting at home or away.
It’s okay being a spectator and being one of these keyboard warriors slating him, but once you’re actually in there it’s a different story. You can’t judge him from one defeat. Look how many fighters have been beat and come back a better fighter. I know my defeats taught me a lot. to know who my friends are and who to have around training camps, that’s what my defeats taught me. You just have to get on with it.
I had to go and address things, I got beat, but I came back a better man. A defeat doesn’t make you a worse person, it makes you stronger and I think Lewis will come back a stronger man.
‘YOU FIND OUT WHO YOUR FRIENDS ARE AFTER A LOSS’
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