Sheffield United starlet Antwoine Hackford’s friendly rivalry with boxing brother Anthony Tomlinson
A friendly sibling rivalry is spurring on Sheffield United starlet Antwoine Hackford and his professional boxer brother Anthony Tomlinson in their respective sporting careers.
Striker Antwoine became the Blades’ youngest-ever Premier League player in January when he made his debut aged 16 and 288 days and is currently furthering his footballing education on loan at National League North side Alfreton.
Meanwhile, Anthony continues his pursuit of a British title to fulfil a promise to his son in Sheffield on Friday.
Sheffield Wednesday: Unsavoury scenes as George Byers and Jamie Smith clash after Peterborough United substitution
Meet the released ex-Sheffield Wednesday man using Twitter to get his career back on track
Key man ruled out as Sheffield Wednesday travel to Peterborough United
Sheffield Wednesday: Reece James apologised to teammates - will be fined after red card
‘100% frustration’ – What Sheffield Wednesday’s Darren Moore said on George Byers touchline fracas
"It’s a little competition in the family now,” said big brother and dad-of-three Anthony, aged 30.
“I’m happy for what he does within his career, I’m over the moon. I respect him for what he does but I’m one to set my own legacy."
Arbourthorne-born Antwoine, an England youth international, made a goalscoring start to life in the sixth tier of English football earlier this month.
"I believe boxing is a lot more difficult than professional football,” Anthony added.
"I love my brother to bits, but I told him if I turned over to football I would be a better footballer than him and he said the same to me about boxing. There’s that bit of banter there.
"I wish him great things, he’s unbelievable and the way everybody talks about him in Sheffield is unbelievable. I’m proud to be his brother.”
Alfreton Town’s club secretary, Andrew Raisin, said: "Antwoine did very well in his first game.
“He’s a young lad learning his trade and hopefully he goes on to better things.”
As for Anthony, who has used boxing to turn his life around, he learned a valuable lesson last time out when he surrendered his unbeaten professional record to experienced Mexican Dante Jordan.
“I’ll beat that kid nine times out of 10 but I threw it away,” he admitted.
"I didn’t listen to my corner. I had a lot of things going on in my personal life during fight week which made me see red.
”I should have pulled out but I got in there like a fighting man.
"I gained a lot of experience in the ring (against Jardon). This time it's going to be more measured. We’re not just going to rely on my power.
"I’m in with a kid that doesn’t get stopped so I’m going to use my boxing ability.”