Champ tells Blue Toon boxers ‘believe in yourself’

On Friday, June 6, Peterhead’s Balmoor Stadium was rocked by a very different kind of champion.

Former boxing undisputed lightweight champion of the world Ken Buchanan MBE was part of packed crowd in to enjoy the Battle of Balmoor.

Peterhead Boxing Club organised the evening at Balmoor.

Peterhead Boxing Club organised the evening at Balmoor.

Amateur fighters from gyms across Scotland including Elgin and Inverness joined members of Peterhead Boxing Club for an evening of heart-pumping Olympic bouts.

And Buchanan, a man with 61 victories under his WBA and WBC belts, was full of praise for the young men on show.

Buchanan said: “The boys have a lot of heart.

“The ability isn’t quite 100 per cent but they are just starting out. They’ve got a lot potential there.

Peterhead Boxing Club organised the evening at Balmoor.

Peterhead Boxing Club organised the evening at Balmoor.

“I’m hoping their mums and dads and pals back them up because you never ever know what can happen.

“They could end up being a world champion.

“I never knew I was going to be world champion but I had belief in myself.

“Why? Because when I was in the ring I only wanted one hand to be held up at the end of the fight - mine.

Peterhead Boxing Club organised the evening at Balmoor.

Peterhead Boxing Club organised the evening at Balmoor.

“If you don’t believe in your self you won’t get anywhere.”

A member of the International Boxing Hall of fame, Buchanan stressed to the amateurs that success stems from more than raw talent.

Boxing is, above all else, a sport of discipline and bravery and having a ‘just say no attitude’ can carry more weight than dozens of hours in the gym.

Buchanan said: “It’s important to look after yourself when you’re growing up , in boxing or football or whatever it may be, you’ve got to take care of your body.

“What I’ll say is what I say to all young people. Stay away from the drugs, stay away from the drink.

“They’ve got to listen to what their trainers are telling them and hopefully their parents are behind them, encouraging their talents.

“Great football players or boxers can end up on the drink or drugs and make a mess of themselves.

“That’s easy to do. Anybody can do that. The hardest thing is to say no and go and achieve.

Peterhead Boxing Club’s James Price said: “Obviously there have been a lot of nerves and that comes after many months of organising.

“Ken’s been doing his superstar stuff and we’re just enjoying the night.

“Anybody who gets in the ropes is very brave. It takes a lot of guts to do that especially knowing the guy you’re facing has been putting in a lot of work.

“It takes a lot of guts to give it your all and calm the nerves.

“Maybe some of the younger guys don’t know really know who Ken is but he’s regarded as the best British boxer of all time.

“To have him in Peterhead with us for the second time is an absolute delight.”

FOR MORE PHOTOS, PICK UP THIS WEEK’S BUCHAN OBSERVER.