BOXER Kelvin Young may have picked up the Swindon Advertiser’s Sportsman of the Year award but celebrating with a glass of champagne and fine food was out of the question.
With his next fight looming on March 14, Swindon IBO Intercontinental super-middleweight champion Young had to bring his own food to the Adver’s Sports Awards evening last Thursday.
While all the other nominees and guests sipped beer and wine while tucking into a chicken drumstick or two, 26-year-old Young’s evening meal consisted of sweet potato, chicken, veg and water.
Young however says the sacrifce is worth it as he embarks on a “make or break” year in boxing. “For this fight we have cut out all the cheats,” revealed Young. “Normally I am allowed two cheats a week where I can have two meals where I eat what I want.
“I usually stop that a week or so before the fight but obviously it’s a big year ahead for me so I’ve cut out all the cheat meals for this camp.
“The meal itself consists of sweet potato, chicken and a little bit of veg. I had to bring my own food freshly cooked from home to the awards but it’s a sacrifice worth making.
“This is the year where it is going to be make or break for me. I’ve kind of already made it having won the IBO Intercontinental title and when I look back on my career I will be proud of what I have achieved already.
“I want to go further now and defend this title twice and then go for the main belt.”
For Kelvin the dieting has been worthwhile and he revealed he has already noticed the difference inside the ring when sparring.
Young added: “I’m feeling much better, sharper and stronger. I’ve been sparring Tony Hill, who I obviously lost an English title eliminator to, but I’ve been sparring brilliantly against him and he has said he can tell the difference in me so it’s worthwhile.”
Young was flattered to have won the Adver’s Sportsman of the Year award but gave much of the credit to his manager-promoter Keith Mayo, who also won an award - Sports Personality of the Year.
“I am honestly over moon to win this award,” added Young. “I’d like to thank everyone who voted for me. I can’t thank them enough for my support.
“Keith doesn’t get the credit he deserves for what he does and what he has done for boxing in Swindon.
“I’m so pleased Keith won an award too. I get in the ring and get all the credit but people don’t see what he does behind the scenes.
“He puts in a lot of money and time to put on these shows and I cannot thanks him enough. He has gone from being a friend to being a real father figure.”