Feature | Oct 06 2018

A tribute to Terry Downes – ‘I lived the life I wanted’

Looking back on the life and career of Terry Downes who has died aged 81, by Matt Christie and Daniel Herbert
terry downes

FORMER world middleweight champion Terry Downes BEM passed away at the age of 81 on October 6, 2017.

The Londoner’s nickname was “Dashing, Bashing, Crashing” – and no one would ever sue Downes under the Trades Descriptions Act. With his aggressive hard-hitting style, the Paddington battler thrilled crowds in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

His rough and ready, blunt-talking Cockney persona also earned him followers at a time when television was just taking off. Two years in the US Marines had toughened him up and early setbacks – he lost to future two-weight world champ Dick Tiger in a 1957 prelim – merely delayed Downes’ rise to the top, which culminated in a trilogy with Paul Pender.


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