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03rd Oct 2016

Dale Evans gives emotional interview following tragic death of opponent Mike Towell

"This is something I have to live with now"

Ben Kiely

Dale Evans is “absolutely heartbroken” by the passing of his opponent Mike Towell.

Dundee fighter Towell was knocked out by Evans in a welterweight title eliminator on Thursday night.

The 25-year-old father was stretchered out of the ring and immediately rushed to hospital after the fight. He was put on a life support machine but his management team confirmed in the early hours of Saturday morning that Towell had died.

24-year-old Evans gave an emotional interview with BBC Wales Sport in which he explained how he has been struggling to cope with the death of his fellow fighter.

“I feel like I am responsible. I can’t stop thinking about Mike and his poor family. All my thoughts are with them.”

“It has been awful. All I can think of is his two-year-old kid and his girlfriend and family who won’t have him around any more.”

“I feel like I am responsible because we are the ones punching each other, and this is something I have to live with now.”

Evans was a training partner of former British middleweight champion Nick Blackwell, whose career was ended earlier this year when he suffered a bleed on the skull after losing his title to Chris Eubank Jr. However, Evans wanted to make it clear that it wasn’t about his team “going through this again”.

“We are only thinking about the Towell family and Mike’s loved ones. Since the second the fight finished, all our thoughts have been with Mike’s family.”

Although Evans is now the mandatory challenger for the British title, he considered hanging up his gloves for good. But now, he has a new motivation for winning the title – as a way of paying tribute to Towell.

“I have been low and thinking that I would probably stop boxing now, but I think I will have a break and I will try to win the British title in Mike’s memory. I feel like one of my own family has passed away.”