After a ten-year exile, Sport Relief has brought back an old tradition in Celebrity Boxing. The hard-hitting event will commence on March 23 and consists of six celebrities battling it out with one on another in aid of raising money for the admirable charity.
And Spencer Matthews has joined the party. He’ll be ditching his champagne-swigging lifestyle to lace up the gloves against ex-football international Wayne Bridge.
“I shall be known as ‘The Dispenser’,” the charismatic 29-year-old exclusively told World Boxing News. “Spencer ‘The Dispenser’ Matthews – which I’m quite fond of.
“Let’s just hope I dispense of Wayne Bridge otherwise the name isn’t going to make any sense at all. I’ll have to bring everything I’ve learnt from growing up in the streets,” he laughed.
“Jokes aside there’ll be no trash talk at all. He’s a proper bloke, someone I have a lot of respect for, I just hope all the hours I’ve put in will pay off. We’ve never even exchanged a handshake or hello so I’m looking forward to giving the bloke a hug at the end of it, which I know sounds weird. I hear that he’s really nice, I can’t wait to speak to him after as I have a lot of respect for him.”
He added: “It’s for Sport Relief at the end of the day and that’s the most important thing. Every donation made can have a massive impact to those less fortunate. I really appreciate everyone who has donated.”
Having participated on TV shows such as The Jump and I’m a Celebrity, it’s obvious the former bachelor enjoys a challenge.
Matthews admitted he has found the training very challenging yet rewarding.
“I’ve dropped around 12 kilos now since accepting this fight, so my body has went through a big change, a very welcome one by the way! I’ve sparred well over 100 rounds now, obviously I’m not a boxer, so I’ve had some good days and some bad days. When you have good days, you feel unstoppable but there’s nothing worse when you’re not feeling your best, it can be a punishing affair.
“I’m very competitive and always want to win so it’s easy to put in the hard hours early in the morning and late at night etc when we’re busy. Wayne had a bout in November, which he won against a guy who seems to have done a lot of boxing, so he’s been doing it a lot longer than me – but I’m not making any excuses.
“A big thank you to England Boxing, in particular to Mick Driscoll and Limehouse Boxing with Mark Collings and Shah Rahman who have all spent a lot of their time in helping me for my fight in the ring.”
Jamie Laing, who teamed up with Spencer for the most recent Celebrity Hunted, will supporting his close friend next weekend. However, when quizzed upon a future match-up, Matthews remained open to the possibility. Taunting the fellow Chelsea posh boy, he concluded: “Hey, if Jamie wants to step in the ring with me then he’s more than welcome to. I’ll fight him the day after Wayne.”
Challenge accepted, Jamie?
Sport Relief officially began this week and you can donate here
Joe Hewlett is lead writer for World Boxing News. Follow Joe on Twitter @Hewlett95