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What we must learn from the death of boxer Mike Towell


Matt Christie



MIKE TOWELL lost his life to boxing on September 30, 2016, hours after a fifth-round loss to Dale Evans in Glasgow. An inquiry into his death has ruled that the final eliminator for the British welterweight title should not have taken place.

The findings, determined by Sheriff Principal C D Turnbull in Glasgow, also suggest that Towell, 25 years old at the time of the tragedy, would not have been allowed to box professionally at all if he had been honest with the British Boxing Board of Control (BBB of C) when he first applied for his licence in 2012.

The published results of the inquiry, which run to 163 pages, are shocking in the extreme. They should provide lessons to ruling organisations like the BBB of C, who do not emerge completely blameless. Though it should be noted that the National Health Service’s failure to alert the Board to several concerning issues surrounding Towell should raise questions, too. But the biggest lesson, that every single person involved in boxing must learn, is that Towell – whose delusions of invincibility are so common in this sport – could have prevented the tragic ending.

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