Anthony Joshua picks Norwich teenager among 2020 pandemic champions

Tyler Didwell, centre, pictured with his parents. 

Tyler Didwell, centre, pictured with dad Jimmy and mum Sarah. - Credit: Tyler Didwell

A Norwich teenager has been hailed as a champion by British heavyweight boxer Anthony Joshua for his efforts in supporting others during the pandemic.

Tyler Didwell, from Thorpe St Andrew, was nominated by his mum Sarah as one of Anthony Joshua's JD Sports Champs for 2020 for the way he supported his family - and was selected as a winner out of hundreds of others. 

The 19-year-old, a mechanical engineer apprentice at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, thought the email telling him he'd won was a scam until his mum admitted she had nominated him.

File photo dated 07-12-2019 of Anthony Joshua.

British heavy-weight boxer Anthony Joshua, named Tyler Didwell as one of his 2020 champions. - Credit: PA

The teenager said he was just doing his part to help his family, which included taking his brother Faron and nan Leslie Sillis to work, going shopping and looking after his mum who was shielding.

Tyler Didwell, who has received recognition from Anthony Joshua

Tyler Didwell, who has received recognition from Anthony Joshua - Credit: Tyler Didwell

Mr Didwell said: "I was helping where I can at home and then taking nan to work as she does night shifts and she cannot drive.

"When you get a message like that you think it is a scam and I didn't do anything at first. 

"I called mum and she is a big Anthony Joshua fan and she was shouting down the phone." 

Tyler Didwell (far right) with his family on holiday.

Tyler Didwell (far right) with his family on holiday. - Credit: Tyler Didwell

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His role as a mechanical engineer apprentice is to ensure the hospital's power, heating, water and ventilation systems operate as well as hospital equipment.

One of the prizes was a Zoom call with Anthony Joshua himself, which Tyler took while in the Jenny Lind children's ward.

He said: "I still didn't think it was real. He popped up on the screen and I was there with my colleague thinking 'it's happening'.

"He started speaking and he was a really nice guy. It was like having a conversation with a normal person, not a celebrity.

"He wasn't checking the time to get off and we had a nice chat."

Tyler Didwell, left, pictured with brother Faron and their father

Tyler Didwell, left, pictured with brother Faron and their father Jimmy - Credit: Tyler Didwell

His nomination said: "Over the past year, he's worked as a mechanical engineer on the wards of Norfolk and Norwich Hospital helping to maintain their medical equipment at the most critical of times. After work Tyler gives up his spare time to run errands for his mum, who's vulnerable as well as help other family members.