Olympic fail­ures spurs me on to win belt – Mar­shall

Sunday Sun - - Boxing -

“I’M not the big­gest fan of the Olympic Games, put it that way,” Sa­van­nah Mar­shall says, prob­a­bly only half jok­ing. The Hartle­pool boxer com­peted at both Lon­don 2012 and Rio 2016, mak­ing history in 2012 as one of the first women to com­pete at the Games in the sport of boxing. She went into the home games as GB’s first ever fe­male world cham­pion too, and was there­fore heav­ily favoured to medal in both – with re­demp­tion on her mind the sec­ond time around af­ter the dis­ap­point­ment in Lon­don. But as we so of­ten see in boxing there isn’t al­ways a fairy­tale end­ing. The sport can be a cruel and un­pre­dictable one. That said, Mar­shall is a war­rior. Known as “the silent as­sas­sin”, she might be shy, but she’s highly skilled too. She worked too hard to leave the sport empty-handed af­ter her Olympic dis­ap­point­ment. She ad­mits she con­tem­plated it, but de­cided to go pro­fes­sional in­stead.

Now 27, Mar­shall has made an im­pres­sive start to life in the paid code, win­ning three in three, and with the last two both end­ing early.

“The Olympics was tough to take, but at the same time, I’m not sure I’d be where I am now if I’d have won an Olympic gold.

“I’m re­ally en­joy­ing pro­fes­sional boxing so far, but I’m not sure I’d have ever turned over if I’d have won a gold medal.

“It’s re­ally hard to con­tinue to mo­ti­vate your­self and I think if I’d have won gold then I wouldn’t have any mo­ti­va­tion to con­tinue.

“But not win­ning gold has just fu­elled my de­sire to make sure I leave this sport with some­thing to show for it.”

Af­ter a slow start, hav­ing signed ini­tially with Floyd May­weather’s TMT Pro­mo­tions, Mar­shall is now back based in the UK with Peter Fury (Tyson’s un­cle and ex-coach) in Bolton.

She will have her fourth pro bout in Bul­garia on the un­der­card of Hughie Fury’s world ti­tle elim­i­na­tor against Kubrat Pulev on Oc­to­ber 27. An IBF In­ter­na­tional ti­tle will be up for grabs and it will be shown live on Chan­nel 5.

Mar­shall said: “It’s great to see how strong women’s boxing is right now. A few years ago women’s pro­fes­sional boxing wasn’t a thing in the UK. Thank­fully, stars like Katie Tay­lor and Ni­cola Adams have paved the way and the sport is thriv­ing for us women now.

“The next fight is the first step on the road to re­demp­tion for me af­ter the Olympics. I want that big ti­tle to show for all my hard work. This IBF in­ter­na­tional belt would be nice but I want the real thing.”

Sa­van­nah urged ev­ery­one to fol­low her jour­ney on In­sta­gram and Twit­ter (@SMar­shall1991 on both). She also asked that any lo­cal busi­nesses in­ter­ested in spon­sor­ing her get in touch too.

Tick­ets for Fire & Fury are on sale via Even­tim.bg

Else­where, Durham’s Darren Sur­tees an­nounced him­self to a global au­di­ence in style on Fri­day night with a knock­out vic­tory over Kane Baker on the Ge­orge Groves-Cal­lum Smith un­der­card.

Boxing on ITV Box Of­fice in Saudi Ara­bia, Sur­tees scored a high­light-reel KO over the Birm­ing­ham man in the sec­ond round. Big op­por­tu­ni­ties lie ahead for Sur­tees now af­ter sign­ing a deal with Sauer­land Pro­mo­tions who have played a huge part in putting to­gether the World Boxing Su­per Se­ries.

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