Money men throw us on head-injury scrapheap
CARL’S CALL FOR DUTY OF CARE
CARL FRAMPTON says boxing must do more to ensure its fighters are looked after once they have hung up their gloves.
Alan Shearer’s documentary on dementia in football, which airs on BBC1 at 10.30pm tonight, will throw the aftercare of professional sportsmen and women back into the spotlight.
And Frampton believes now is as good a time as any for the fight game to look at how it can better support its retired heroes.
The former featherweight world champion, who takes on Horacio Garcia of
Mexico in Belfast on Saturday, said:
“There probably isn’t enough aftercare from boxing for its fighters and that’s something to do with promoters and managers.
“You see it so many times – guys who are best friends with their promoters while they are winning and making money for everyone.
“Then they have a bad night and a loss and that’s them on the scrapheap.
“They don’t hear from their managers or promoters, or see them, ever again.
“It’s a hard game, and you have to put your whole life into it.
“So myself included, and other guys, we don’t have anything to fall back on if the boxing doesn’t work out, because we have put everything we know and have had into the sport.
“I don’t have GCSEs or a trade behind me.
“So it’s important fighters are looked after when their careers are over, and not just thrown on the scrapheap.
“That can be something that managers and promoters can help fighters with.” Frampton split with promoter Barry McGuigan and trainer Shane McGuigan after losing his world title to Leo Santa Cruz in January.
And as he prepares for his first outing since, with new trainer Jamie Moore, he has significantly reduced the number of sparring rounds in his training camp.
He added: “People have made out that I’ve dropped the number of rounds I’ve been sparring to try to avoid [head injury] problems after boxing.
“But if you woke up as a boxer worrying about taking a punch to the head in sparring then you’re in the wrong game.
“The main reason to reduce the rounds was to restrict the injuries. I used to spar a lot, over 200 rounds per camp, and I just felt like it was a lot.
“I did enjoy sparring but you’re still taking a lot of punishment and I was having problems with, almost whiplash, where you’re knocked about for 220 rounds.
“Niggles up around my neck, my shoulders, my back.
“We’ve reduced the amount of sparring and made it quality rather than quantity, and it seems to be working.
“I’ve done less than half the number of rounds I would normally but when I did my last 10 rounds I was flying, as fit as I’ve ever been.”
CAMPAIGN: Alan Shearer REDUCING SPARRING Carl Frampton has slashed in half his sparring schedule in a bid to ease ‘whiplash’