Popular Scottish cruiserweight Stephen Simmons has retired from boxing as the IBF European champion at the age of 33.
Edinburgh’s ‘Monster’ won the belt by beating Simon Barclay in October last year but has opted to hang up his gloves in the wake of March’s British title defeat to Matty Askin.
Simmons (18-3-KO7) said: “It’s time to enjoy spending more time with my wife and baby. I’m happy and content with retiring at this stage of my career.
“I’ve done a lot in boxing and am thankful for all it’s given me and taught me. I’ve been boxing almost 22 years and my body can’t take the same strain and pressure as it used to.
“I’ve been around the world and made many friends in boxing and other sports.
“I’d like to give thanks to everyone who sponsored me during my career and my management at MTK Global, all the coaches I worked with and especially my amateur coach and uncle Kenny Simmons and my final professional coach, Billy Nelson.
“I’d also like to thank my family, friends and fans who’ve given me such great support since I was a kid. I had 115 amateur fights and 21 as a pro. I’m retiring with a defeat to Matty but I’m still retiring a champion.
“I’ll be back in the sport in one way or another soon but for now it’s time to focus on my family and watch my son grow up first-hand rather than through videos and pictures.”
Simmons turned professional in 2011 and won his first 11 contests. In 2016, he faced Noel Gevor for the WBC International cruiserweight title and was only denied a step up to world level by a controversial points defeat.