At the top end of boxing, as brutal a game as it can be, at least the risks come with abundant rewards. Further down the chain, where the livelihoods of honest professionals are altogether more precarious, it can be quite a different story.
Take the example of Shotts fighter Scott Allan, three years a professional fighter, a Scottish title holder and an ordinary bloke giving his all to make a name for himself beyond his own borders.
A first defeat of his pro career to Glasgow boxer Kash Farooq had derailed his progress, but he was so desperate to get back on track in a rematch scheduled for September 9th that he had hired extra coaches and a dietician to get into the best shape of his life.
Then, disaster struck. An injury to headline fighter Ryan Brawley meant that his fight with Willie Limond was scrapped, and along with it, the undercard, which included Allan’s fight with Farooq.
It wasn’t just the money lost that cut Allan deep, but the wasted time and effort spent on a gruelling training camp that pulled the rug out from under his feet.
“I was absolutely devastated,” said Allan. “I was millimetres away from packing in boxing altogether, that’s how bad I felt.
“I wasn’t answering my phone to anybody. I went out on the lash and I just thought, ‘this s*** isn’t for me anymore.’ I was sacrificing my whole life just for shows to get cancelled.
“To put all that effort into training, strength and conditioning, and employing dieticians and coaches, that is money I won’t get back.
“I had never been fitter. I know every boxer says that in the lead up to a fight, but I genuinely never had been.
“When it got cancelled it left me in bits. I have been a pro for three years in boxing, and it has happened to me six times. Six times!
“Shows get cancelled and there’s nothing you can do. It’s murder.”
Luckily for Allan, news that the St Andrew’s Sporting Club would stage the fight as a headline event on November 23rd has dragged him out of the black hole he found himself in, and he is out of the pub and back in the gym.
“When the rematch got tied down that gave me a kick up the backside to get my finger back out,” he said.
“I’m back on track and in full swing. I’m training twice a day and three times on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
“I’m just praying to god that it doesn’t get cancelled this time, and with it being St Andrew’s, I’m sure that it won’t be.
“I hope Kash is training hard, because he’ll need to be.”
There is no greater reason for Allan to stay on the straight and narrow than the recent birth of his daughter, Sophia , who is even considerate enough to allow him to get some much-needed rest in the evenings.
“She is an absolute dream,” he said. “If that doesn’t motivate you to get up out your bed in the morning to go running then what will?”
Source : HeraldScotland