Sunday 27 January 2013

Bill Chevalley 1925-2013

Bill supervises Mark Rowe's groundwork during a training session (1970)

I was saddened to hear last week that the veteran boxing trainer Bill Chevalley, perhaps best known for guiding middleweight Mark Rowe to a British and Commonwealth title, had passed away at the age of 87. While it’s perhaps a cliché to say of someone ‘boxing was his life’, this statement is entirely true of Bill, and so I say it here without hesitation.  

While there are many people who knew Bill far better than I and who are better qualified to write about him (I wasn’t even born when Bill’s well-known protégé Mark Rowe was making headlines), when I heard the news of his passing I felt compelled to pen a small tribute. 

Sunday 6 January 2013

A punch on the proboscis

By O. F. Snelling

This article, written in the 1980s, is reproduced here with the kind permission of Derek O’Dell, Editor and Producer of ‘The Southern Ex-Boxer’.

Teddy Baldock lands a left on the nose of
Kid Pattenden in their 1929 British
bantamweight title clash
Professional boxing isn’t like entering some beauty competition. And it never was. Certainly, some pretty handsome fellows have taken to the punch-up for fame and fortune, but if they ever worried about their looks excessively they were simply mugs who adopted the wrong occupation. Few of them ever got very far.

What’s the commonest blow employed in boxing? I’d say, without hesitation, that it’s the straight left lead to the face. It doesn’t always land, but when it does it usually arrives with a plonk right on the schnozzle, and the poor old proboscis is the human feature which takes more than a bit of the brunt in most fistic exchanges.

Consequently, just as most fighters seldom get through a career without sooner or later knocking up one or two of their knuckles, so very few manage all their days in this tough business without suffering a broken nose.