Joe Murray – an Olympian experiencing the dark side of professional boxing

Joe Murray
Joe Murray treasures his Olympic memories Action Images
'If you’re not in the spotlight with Eddie Hearn or Frank Warren, you’re going to find it hard,' Joe Murray tells John Dennen

MANCHESTER lightweight Joe Murray does not want to be left out in the cold. But once again he’s just waiting for an opportunity.

“I’m looking to come back, get back in training and when that phone rings I’ll be ready,” he tells Boxing News.

His last contest was a bruising one round stoppage defeat to British champion Lewis Ritson in February. “You’re away and stuff like that, and then they offer you a load of money to fight in a short space of time. They knew I’d just be making weight in that time. Ritson’s good, he’s a good fighter but I reckon it would have been a closer fight if they gave me an eight-week camp like they gave everyone else, not a four-week camp,” he lamented.

Joe Murray

But it was a fight he felt he had to accept. “If you don’t take [those opportunities] you get put back on the shelf. You can’t refuse to take them. I’ve got no promoter. When these opportunities come you have to take them. If you don’t take them, you’re just going to be sat on the shelf. So if I didn’t take it they’d say they offered me the fight and I didn’t want it. I had no choice in the matter. That I’ve got no promoter now, I’ve got to wait. You’ve got to rebuild,” Murray said. “In boxing everyone knows if you’re not in the spotlight or you’re not selling tickets, you’re going to struggle. I was an Olympian and I’ve seen both sides of it in a sense.

“If you’re not in the spotlight with Eddie Hearn or Frank Warren, you’re going to find it hard if you’re not selling tickets.”

“Promoters have got to make money and they’ve got to build fighters up. That’s the sad reality about professional boxing,” he continued. “When they’ve invested money they don’t want them fighters beat. The way they can do that is by giving a boxer short notice or getting them off the couch as they used to say.”

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