Nathan Dale aims to become Norwich’s next boxing hero

Norwich's newest boxing professional Nathan Dale says he intends to become the latest successful member of the Kicktop production line.

Norwich's newest boxing professional Nathan Dale says he intends to become the latest successful member of the Kicktop production line.

The 20-year-old was a successful schoolboy and amateur campaigner, but admits he 'lost his way' for a while once he reached the senior ranks.

However, a year out of the ring only served to refresh his hunger for the sport, and after four months spent rubbing shoulders with the Walsh brothers at Graham Everett's gym in Whiffler Road has decided the professional route is the next step to follow.

The intention is to do what his new stable-mates have done – and win titles.

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'I grew up with the Walshes – they were in the ABAs and winning what I wanted to win,' said the former CNS school boy.

'To be in the same camp and sparring and grafting with them is superb. It is going to happen that I follow them and their success again – I will train so hard for that.

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'Whenever I used to come up here I always mimicked the brothers, I used to try and take a bit from them all – Michael's aggression, Liam's boxing power and Ryan's head movement, which is superb. If I get a bit of all that I am on a winner.'

The Kickstop gym may be an ordinary building, but its reputation is growing – Everett has helped produce former two-time world heavyweight champion Herbie Hide, former British and European lightweight champion Jon Thaxton, former Commonwealth heavyweight title holder Sam Sexton, as well as the Walsh brothers, of whom Liam leads the way as current Commonwealth super-featherweight.

'This is not any old building, it's a proper working man's gym,' said Dale. 'It smells of sweat and graft –- there is nothing pretty about it, but you know what you are getting. It's blood, sweat and tears.'

Dale is hoping to make his pro debut in September, at welterweight or light-welterweight – a day that will finally erase the difficulties of that year out of his life.

'Everything was OK, I was concentrating on my studies – I am a qualified fitness instructor – but I felt there was something missing, there wasn't that fire and as soon as I came back here I was hooked again. It was like I was nine years old and starting all over again.

'I suppose I had fallen out of love with the sport really. Now I am back and hungry and I want to be a champion. I have grown up and I am ready to go.

'It's a superb feeling to be where I am now. I've been training for a while and I have been loving every minute of it and now I can't wait to get into the ring.'

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