Brendan Ingle – his loss is still hard to bear, says Johnny Nelson

Brendan Ingle's family and friends are still struggling to cope with his loss, says former world champion Johnny Nelson, one of the legendary trainer's biggest successes.

Tuesday, 4th June 2019, 11:44 am
Updated Tuesday, 4th June 2019, 11:45 am
Those were the days...Brendan Ingle with former world champion Johnny Nelson

Ingle passed away a year ago and his memory has not faded, says Nelson.

Reflecting on the last 12 months, Nelson said: "It was hard. It probably took me about six months to be able to actually talk about Brendan without choking up.

"I just had to have a word with myself to say you know what you've got to spread the word about how much of a genius this guy was, well ahead of his time.

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"When you talk about multi-culturalism now, it is a buzz word...our gym was like that 40 years ago.

"Blacks, whites, Asian, gypsies Irish everything!

"The establishment used to give Brendan so much stick but Brendan used to just get on with it.

"He was such a wise, wise man. And we see the stars he produced in boxing, there were so many stars that he produced in life...there will never be another Brendan."

Nelson, who is supporting the Brendan INgle Foundation, added: ""He is sadly, sadly missed. It is very hard for his wife and family, still.

"He left a legacy and I will do everything possible to sing his praise."

Nelson recalled how Ingle navigated him "from 13 amateur fights - winning only three - to retiring the world cruiserweight champion and setting a record...if Brendan can do that with me...

"That was a mind job. Brendan made me believe (in) myself. "I didn't have confidence...Brendan was an amazing man inside and outside the ring."

He also recounted in a video with Seconds Out an occasion when he and others visited a prison in Doncaster.

"Brendan used to take us into Lindholme prison to talk to the prisoners and spar. These prisoners would have six months to prepare for us...they paid a pound to charity.

"We weren't allowed to hit them back, myself, Naseem Hamed, Herbie Hyde, Clifton Mitchell,..the whole squad went down."  

Beforehand, said Nelson, Ingle had assembled the boxers and said: "Do not hit them back. One of the prisoners hit Herbie Hyde and he hit him back.

"And all the prisoners went mad, they got up and the screws had to calm them down, Brendan jumped in the ring and started singing to them.

"You see these grown men, that had committed crimes, sat there, mesmererised by him.

"Brendan calmed them down. Only he could do that."