It’s a belter as Ryan Walsh hands over his Lonsdale belt to his ‘guardian angel’ – brother Michael
- Credit: Alan Stanford/Focus Images Ltd
Ryan Walsh won the coveted Lonsdale belt when he beat Marco McCullough – and promptly gave it away.
The Cromer boxer has vowed not to forget two of the men who helped him on his journey to the top of the domestic ladder – his late father, John, and older brother Michael.
Victory was dedicated to his father as Ryan looked to the heavens after stopping McCullough in the 11th round.
'I thanked him for being there,' said Walsh. 'He is always there on fight night - he is always there anyway.
'I tell anyone who will listen - one drop of blood has got more memory than all the computers in the world put together, and I have his blood in me.'
You may also want to watch:
Boxers defending the Lonsdale belt three times get to keep it for good – Walsh is the first to be able to do that since Billy Joe Saunders after his victory over Chris Eubank Jnr in November 2014. -
But almost as soon as it was secured, it was handed over to Michael.
- 1 Norwich hairdresser, former boxer and bodybuilder, dies from Covid
- 2 Yellow weather warning for snow in place across region
- 3 Drink driver arrested after crashing into two trees in Norwich
- 4 Jack-knifed lorry shuts A148 as police issue ice warning
- 5 The secrets and scandals of a former Norwich hotel
- 6 Norwich Debenhams looks doomed as Boohoo to buy brand
- 7 Crash boy's mum says he's 'badly shaken but OK'
- 8 Up and coming Norwich musician reaches number 13 in UK charts
- 9 Atlantis Tower up for sale after owner signs ‘outrageous’ loan deal
- 10 Map reveals the most serious crashes on the NDR since it fully opened
'It is the least he deserves,' he said. 'Maybe he wants one for himself but the point is he earned that. I can't stress enough everything me and (brother) Liam have ever done we owe to Michael - our first cars, our first gym equipment, everything.
'He is more than a brother - that man is my guardian angel. I am so lucky that is one of my biggest strengths.'
Victory over the durable McCullough looked like it might have come earlier: Walsh had his man in trouble several times, but the Northern Irishman refused to buckle until the penultimate round.
'I felt I had a little bit of rust,' admitted Walsh, who will now looking for another European title fight as a stepping stone to a world title attempt
'The camp was perfect, I am the fittest I have ever been in my life, the best I have ever made the weight.
'I just credit Marco for his toughness. He was a very tough lad. He used the ropes well – if I could have caught him in the middle of the ring I think I might have been able to get him over, but he is a every tough man. I hit him with shots that have dropped a lot of my other opponents – he is one of the first featherweights I haven't put over, so fair play to that.'