Jump to content



Recommended Posts



Craig Birch says girlfriend Emma is also helping 'Funtime'


THERE will be a new Frankie Gavin at work when he steps through the ropes at London’s York Hall on Saturday night. England’s only World Amateur champion returns to the ring with an eight-rounder against Frenchman Monuir Guebbas, after missing a fight against Dean Harrison in December with the flu.


But the New Year has seen Gavin turn over a new leaf, starting with a permanent move to Manchester, leaving behind his hometown of Birmingham. The 25-year-old feels it’s necessary to get his head down when working with trainer Anthony Farnell, a born-and-bred Mancunian, up north.


That’s not the only change to his life, as Gavin has so far spent 2011 living the clean sort of existence that is necessary to get to the top. A steady girlfriend has helped with Emma Heffron, sister of boxing brothers Ronnie and Mark, bringing a calming influence that is much needed for such an affable character.


Gavin is also adamant that not a drop of alcohol will touch his lips before December – and he didn’t get the “Funtime” moniker for nothing – which brings a temporary end to his nights on the town. It’s a vow made with such confidence he has £500 riding on it with Craig Gardner, the Birmingham City footballer, which has swelled into £5,000-plus with Farnell and Co joining the bet.


But, seriously, it’s all positive moves geared towards Gavin fulfilling his undoubted potential in acting like a champion – in and out of the ring.


He said: “I haven’t been back to Birmingham this year, not once, I don’t go back at all because I am completely up here now. My mum comes up when she can, but that’s it. I am from Birmingham and I will always represent Birmingham and I would never, ever say I was from Manchester.


“But my girlfriend is up here, I spar with her brother in the gym and I haven’t had a drink since December 9, two days before I was supposed to fight last time.


“I don’t really miss the lifestyle back home because it wasn’t what I really needed, these days I spend my Saturday nights watching Fight Night on Sky Sports!”


The immediate target for Gavin is the British light-welterweight title, which will be contested the same night as his return to action with champion Lenny Daws defending against Ashley Theophane. There’s a Lonsdale Belt riding on it for Daws and there’s even the chance he could vacate after the fight but, however it pans out, it’s the title Gavin wants.


However, first comes Guebbas, a rugged customer who has been in there with the likes of Kevin Mitchell, John Murray, Barry Morrison and Levan Kirakosyan. Gavin doesn’t need telling the Frenchman’s not an opponent to take lightly – one look at his record tells him all he needs to know.


The Brummie has always called his December 2009 slugfest with Samir Teragoui his hardest fight yet, which he won by stoppage with nine seconds of the last round to go.


However, Teragoui lasted just two sessions with Guebbas last June.


But Gavin has been sparring with big hitters Craig Watson and Matthew Hall, who is preparing to return to the ring in May, to get him ready for fight night.


He said: “There’s obviously something there with my opponent, but he doesn’t know how strong I have been looking in the gym. I haven’t had power like this for a while.


“He’s been in there with some big punchers, but they like to bang whereas I like to let my shots go, so you never know.


“If I keep as busy as what we have been speaking about, I could be European champion by the end of the year.”


Gavin’s fellow Brummie Don Broadhurst, who has lost his way since losing the Commonwealth super-flyweight crown to British champion Lee Haskins in December 2009, will soon be a stablemate. Broadhurst has joined Farnell’s camp in a bid to get his career back on track, breaking his long association with Richie Woodhall.


As the two are firm friends, “The Don” will also be a flat-mate at Gavin’s apartment in Manchester.


He said: “In my opinion, Don went a bit stale by getting used to doing things at home and it’s easily done.


“Lots of fighters have done it and lots of fighters have come back from it.”



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...