Frankie Gavin Turns Down Big Offers To Go Pro, Will Remain Amateur For Foreseeable Future

04.09.08 - by James Slater - Going into the 2008 Beijing Olympics, lightweight talent Frankie Gavin was the most talked about British boxer of the games. Sadly, though many hade expected him to win a gold, the 22-year-old failed to make the 60 KG weight limit, despite working incredibly hard to do so..

Forced to miss out the Olympics, Gavin saw team-mate James DeGale go on to win gold at middleweight. Both fighters have since been besieged with offers to turn pro - for big money. But while DeGale is still pondering his future, Gavin has made his mind up; he will remain amateur for now.
Speaking with the BBC recently, the reigning world amateur lightweight champion spoke about both his Olympic disappointment and his plans for the coming months.

"There's no-one to blame, "Gavin told BBC with regards to his not going to Beijing. "It just happened. I thought the weight was going to come off but the last three or four pounds were not moving at all. In the end I did a really big session and lost a quarter of a pound. I knew it wasn't going to come. And I had a talk with Terry Edwards (the Great Britain Olympic boxing coach) and he said I think that's it there [chances of making weight gone]. At first I said no but then I thought about it a bit more and thought he was right. This year I've been walking around three or four kilos heavier than I was last year. There was nothing I could do - maybe if I chopped a leg off or something - but there was nothing on me [weight-wise] at all."

Obviously still upset about missing the 2008 games, Gavin spoke about what he will do next.

"I've had offers, from Frank Warren and Oscar De La Hoya. But there's a good chance of me staying amateur."

Gavin later confirmed that he will indeed be staying amateur, and that his next goal is to fight in the European championships that take place in Liverpool, U.K this November - where Gavin will likely fight up in the 64 KG weight class. The 22-year-old also said he'd love to box in the 2012 Olympics, to be held in London.

"I'll be 26 [by the time 2012 comes] but I'm a young 22 now," Gavin said. "I don't get into wars so 2012 is a realistic chance if the right offers are put on the table."

While many fans will no doubt feel Gavin is doing the wrong thing by not going pro, the talented amateur perhaps wants to capture the gold medal he was always expected to win in Beijing. He will just have to wait another four years to make his dream come true. This, I feel, is the main reason behind Frankie's decision to stay amateur. There are, after all, more important things than money.

Article posted on 04.09.2008

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