South London boxer Darryll Williams is preparing for his return to the ring next month after fighting back from a debilitating injury which almost cost him his career.
The super middleweight, who boxes out of Miguel’s Gym in Brixton, admits he was so low that he considered retirement when told he would require extensive surgery to repair ligament damage to his right hand by fusing bone from his hip, and would be left sidelined on crutches for at least a year.
‘I couldn’t believe what was happening. I was only four fights into my career as a pro and I’d won all of them.
‘I knew something was wrong when I first took the knock. But when you’re young and determined to succeed, you don’t really consider things like injuries.
‘My arm was in a cast and I couldn’t get around without crutches. Rehab was a million miles away for me, let alone training or fighting.
‘There were times when I considered not coming back. Rehab can be torture, physically and mentally.
‘I kept telling myself ‘You’ve beaten all of your opponents without the full use of your hand. Imagine what you can do with it.’ Fortunately I had people around me who believed in me and my ability.’
Williams, who is nicknamed ‘Ferocious’, initially suffered the accident while sparring in the gym of Olympic gold medalist James DeGale in 2012, just weeks after making his professional debut.
However the 24-year-old only sought medical help three fights and almost 12 months later, and was delivered the diagnosis he feared.
Williams has since battled back by beating Joe Walsh and James Child respectively this year, bringing his overall record to six professional wins from six.
And he believes his upcoming bout on 18 July at the Camden Centre, Kings Cross can provide him with the springboard he needs to get his career back on track and help launch him to the heights he was tipped to achieve.
‘I’ll be coming out all guns blazing as if I never left.
‘I’ve won both of my fights this year against good opponents, but this is the one. I’ve been pushing my limits and giving every ounce in the gym.
‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I’m back and I’m ready prove why they were all talking about me.’
Tickets and information can be found by tweeting Williams on @DarryllWilliams.