35-year-old Welshman and former IBF featherweight titleholder Lee Selby announced his retirement from professional boxing today, Tuesday 5th April 2022.
In his most recent in-ring appearance, Selby fell short, losing to Gustavo Lemos via stoppage in an IBF lightweight title eliminator.
Selby today released a prepared statement on his social media. “After 27 years as an amateur and professional boxer, I know the time is right for me to hang up the gloves,”
“Being raised on a council estate in Barry, South Wales, you learn early on about adversity. For many young people the burden of being raised in poverty takes its toll, but boxing saved me more than I ever thought possible.”
Lee Selby Calls It a Day
While being a ranked outsider, Selby received his big break when he knocked out then-unbeaten Stephen Smith for the British and Commonwealth featherweight titles. This was the start of a decade long run of success.
After several defences of his titles, Selby added the European championship by stopping former world title challenger Rendall Munroe via.
In May 2015, Selby joined the famous list of spectacular Welsh fighters when he won the IBF title from Evgeny Gradovich, following in the footsteps of former Welsh featherweight champs Howard Winstone and Steve Robinson.
Selby would go on to make four successful defences over three years, beating former three-weight world champion Fernando Montiel via Unanimous Decision, Eric Hunter, and Jonathan Barros and Eduardo Ramirez.
Lee Selby would lose his title to Josh Warrington via split decision n a close fight in Warrington’s hometown of Leeds, England, in May 2018. The defeat resulted in a rather surprising jump of two weight classes for Selby, who fought at lightweight.
With a successful start of two wins, one of them over another former three-weight world titleholder Ricky Burns, Selby would narrowly lose to unbeaten George Kambosos Jr. In a close fight, Selby lost by a split decision.
After 17-month out of the ring, Selby would head to Argentina, where he faced Lemos, where Lee Selby suffered the first stoppage loss of his successful 14-year professional career.
Words From Lee Selby
“I am proud to be the 12th Welshman to win a world title and my name will forever sit in the record books alongside those great fighters,” he said. “When I look back on my career, I have realized everything I set out to achieve.
“I tried to be a good champion and treat people with respect. I have always demonstrated [the] importance of hard work and sacrifice in achieving my goals. I’ve experienced some amazing victories but also learned valuable lessons in defeat that made me the man I am today.
“I hope my career can be an inspiration to those boxers starting out on small shows that your dreams can become a reality.”
“I exit the ring with no regrets, happy, healthy and with my family financially secure,” said the father of three. “Boxing has been my life and I’m sure my involvement in the sport will continue in the years to come as I look to set new goals. Thank you boxing.”
Image Credits Embed from Getty Images