If you'd ever met Brendan Ingle, this is the smile you would have seen
The wily old fox of Sheffield boxing passed away last week, aged 77.
Much of his work in training kids alongside world champions had been taken over by Dominic, at the gym in Wincobank.
Dom said of his Dad: “He meant so much to many and for many different reasons. He helped everyone he could and guided others. He had a great life doing a job he loved and achieved more than he could have ever imagined. His influence reached far and wide and he will be greatly missed.”
He said a picture of his dad, with a beaming smile, encapsulated his “Smile and the World smiles with you” philosophy.
Former WBC world champion Junior Witter was devastated by the legend’s death. He said: “It’s heartbreaking. “I thought to myself, ‘I’m prepared for this, I know it’s coming, I’m going to be prepared.’ And as the realisation has hit me, I’ve just felt lower and lower.”
While the Ingle gym is in mourning, little will change in terms of the regime that Brendan started.
Not one single boxer is regarded as ‘top man’ despite the championship-winning credentials of the likes of Billy Joe Saunders and Kell Brook.
Asked by The Star recently who was “cock-of-the-walk” at the Newman Road base, Witter replied: “No one. Not one person dominates at the gym. It’s all about who has the next challenge ahead of them.
“If Kell’s got a fight, it is all about him. If Billy’s got a fight, it is all about him. Same with Barry (Galahad.) It’s how it works, it is whoever is next in line.
“There might be fighters who are at the top of the tree but there are always others who are almost on that level and want to achieve the same things.”
Witter says Sheffield-based Leigh Wood is an “brilliant” example of those coming through the system.
The 29-year-old, who recorded a third-round stoppage on the undercard of Brook’s last show at Sheffield Arena in March, has a 20-win career, with just one blemish, a loss to Doncaster’s Gavin McDonnell four years ago.
Witter says Nottingham-born Wood, who won the Midlands area featherweight title in 2016, deserves a crack at the English title.