Sam Sexton not ready to surrender his British heavyweight crown to Hughie Fury

Sam Sexton shows off his belt at Carrow Road. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Sam Sexton shows off his belt at Carrow Road. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd - Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Sam Sexton has enjoyed the honour of being British heavyweight champion – and isn't about to relinquish it without a fight.

The Norwich fighter makes the first defence of his crown against Hughie Fury in Bolton tonight as he enjoys an India summer to a career which began back in September, 2005 – at Carrow Road.

He returned to the home of Norwich City recently, showing off the belt he won last autumn.

'I got a great reception from everyone, it was really good,' said Sexton. 'The plan is to go back again at the start of the season and show the fans the belt again.

'I have enjoyed the attention since I won the title, of course I do. If I retired I'd only be at home twiddling my thumbs. I am 33 years old and for more than half of my life I have been involved in boxing. I love it. It's my life.'

Sexton's career has run anything but smoothly, with injuries and personal issues, including the death of his mother, having an inevitable effect.

Sexton was just 14 when he formed an enduring alliance with Graham Everett and the Norwich trainer says he has rarely seen the now 33-year-old in finer shape.

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Both men, it seems, have benefited from Sexton's title win over Gary Cornish in September.

'He is in a good place,' said Everett. 'He is happy, he is the British heavyweight champion, it has given him a lift.

'As a person that sort of achievement has got to lift you – I take great pride in the fact I trained a British heavyweight champion, it has given me a lift of my own.

'Life is affected by results and when you have had a goods result like we had before Christmas, well, that made Christmas nice, a little bit more special, any time you are feeling a little bit down you think about that night and you have got the British heavyweight champion and it is nice, fantastic.

'I will be honest, I think Sam has possibly under-achieved really in his career, but he has now won what he should have won when he beat Gary Cornish. It has lifted him as a fighter, he is very happy in his personal life. We know a lot of bad things happened at the wrong time, but that is then and this is now, This camp has been really good – he will be ready, he is more than ready.'

Tonight's fight is live on free-to-air Channel 5, starting at 9pm.

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