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Fight of Your Life

26th Jul 2018

Episode 6: Climbing the Shard

No rest for the wicked

Oli Dugmore

No rest for the wicked

“So I just fucking climbed the equivalent of the Shard.”

Sweat is dribbling off Dylan Evans’ chin, running from the top of his skull to his chin, unimpeded by hair long-since purged by chemotherapy.

The pace was moderate, at full fitness Dylan would put this time to shame. But this is a different iteration of the 23-year-old amateur MMA fighter, one ravaged by chemicals mainlined intravenously every fortnight to treat Hodgkin lymphoma.

Dylan quit his job to follow the dream of becoming a fighter. He had accrued a professional record of 2-4 before his diagnosis in January 2018. On August 10 his chemotherapy finishes, and he has every intention of returning to the cage, fitness permitting.

“It depends on the longer impact of the chemo,” Dylan tells JOE – he might not ever be able to return to the cage if the blood cancer leaves a lasting mark on his fitness. Only time and future training sessions will tell, once his immune system has recovered and permits close contact with other human beings.

One way Dylan is trying to get ahead of that is training through his treatment, the difficulty of which few can comprehend without battling cancer themselves.

Dylan summited the equivalent of the Shard on the Champions Ladder, a rotating treadmill of wooden steps. “Fucking hell man them things are tricky,” he says.

“Lost about a litre of sweat. I climbed the equivalent of the shard, did some drills on the bag, think I deserve a nap, at least.”