Coventry fans next weekend say goodbye to one of the city’s favourite fighters of recent years.
Troy James has announced he’s hanging his gloves up after his fight at Mercia Banqueting Suite on Saturday, October 12.
The show is billed as ‘The Last Battle of Troy.’
The fight will be the 32nd of a professional career that’s brought James Midlands honours and a shot at the British super-featherweight championship.
“It’s been a great journey,” said the 35 year old, “and I’m sad it’s coming to an end.
“When I put the post up (on Facebook), I was very emotional. My missus (Natalie McNulty) was laughing at me, but knowing this will be the last time I get in the ring is a sad feeling. I love it so much.
“You have to love getting punched in the head to be a boxer. Boxers are a bit weird !
“I want to enjoy this last night. They are calling it ‘The Last Battle of Troy’ and it should be a great night.”
James revealed that his best night was a boxer came at Bedworth Civic Hall in September, 2014.
He outpointed Scottish southpaw Ronnie Clark in a British-title eliminator – and nearly five years on, Clark is still in contention after upsetting unbeaten Zelfa Barrett.
“Nobody has outboxed Ronnie Clarke the way I outboxed him – and I can’t box,” said James, a father of four.
“I’m not even a boxer.
“It all came together for me that night. I remember thinking afterwards: ‘Where did that come from ?’ because I was never a boxer. That was the best small-hall show I ever boxed on. After the decision was announced everyone was singing and dancing. I’m happy with the memories I’ve got from boxing. It made my life better. It was a great journey.”
James only started boxing at 20, inspired by watching Ricky Hatton, and after winning Novice honours with Capitol ABC, he turned professional with Barry McGuigan.
As McGuigan’s first managerial signing, James was national news and his first few fights were screened on Sky Sports.
James moved on and as he approaches his final fight, he said: “Overall, I’m really happy with my career. I look back with fondness, but at the same time I’m gutted I didn’t win the British title. I watch boxing now and it hurts. I sit there thinking: ‘I could have been British champion.’”
James got his shot in April, 2016 and was stopped in eight rounds by Liam Walsh.
“All I asked for was a fair shot,” he said, “and I didn’t get it. I got four weeks’ notice for the British-title fight – and I was going on holiday when I got the call. We all know Liam can’t make 9st 4lbs at four weeks’ notice, so he must have known the fight was happening before I found out. That upsets me a bit. It should have been fair – and it wasn’t. I was the mandatory challenger and should have had more than four weeks’ notice. On the night he was the better man, but people don’t know the full story.
“It’s bittersweet. I don’t want to come across as being sore because ultimately, it’s down to me and if you’re good enough, you make it. But I just think if certain things had turned out differently, I would have got what I wanted – and that was to be British champion.”
The show also features David Seymour, Michael Green and the return of cruiserweight Dilly Singh.