Back in September, Anthony Hardy was preparing for his English title eliminator against Freddie Kiwitt until a letter from the BBBofC told him otherwise.
After having standard tests for the board, Hardy was informed that his license would be taken away from him after a deterioration in his eye. Following the news, the light-welterweight was fearing the worst after being told he had to find £3,000 for eye surgery.
Luckily for the Durham man, his friends, family and fans helped donate towards the surgery.
“If I’m being honest I didn’t see a way back into boxing after receiving the news from the board. The test said that my visual acuity wasn’t perfect and that they couldn’t renew my license until it was resolved. I’m a working-class lad and didn’t have that sort of money to pay on getting my eye sorted but luckily, I gained a lot of support,” Hardy exclusively told World Boxing News.
“On social media, users helped raise £750 towards it as well as my family, friends and sponsors chipping in. The specialists said it could take up to three months to recover but I had recovered after seven weeks. I am so humbled by the support from everybody and I will pay them back by winning fights and causing major upsets this year.”
It was a dark time for Hardy and his team to deal with after working so hard to prepare for an eliminator for the English title.
But now he is purely looking forward to 2017 being his year of progression and is aiming to win many titles.
“I was pumped up the week before the fight with Kiwitt. I had been doing 10 rounds of sparring with middleweights and 200 metre sprints I felt great.
“This week has been the first time I have sparred since having surgery and everything feels good. I have a fight on March 4 with an unnamed opponent so it’s a case of walking before running.
“I need to get back to winning ways and once I do then be sure of me making a big statement this year,” he added.
Joe Hewlett is a staff writer for WBN. Follow Joe on Twitter @Hewlett95